Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Scott Bessent, a veteran at Soros Fund Management who ran George Soros’s European investments for eight years, is now returning to the firm as chief investment officer, Bloomberg reported.Bessent, 49, who some consider Soros’ protege, will now oversee the $25 billion that belongs to Soros, his family and foundations, after Soros retired this summer and Keith Anderson, the former CIO left in July.
“I am pleased to announce that Scott Bessent will join Soros Fund Management LLC,” the letter from Soros reportedly said.
Here’s what he we know about him and his career thus far. It’s been killer.
Bessent was born in Conway, South Carolina. He attended Yale and graduated with honours in 1984.
He would later return to his alma mater as an adjunct professor teaching a class a class called “Hedge Funds: History, Theory and Practice.”
As a student, Bessent planned on pursuing a career in journalism, but he ended up taking an internship for the famed money manager Jim Rogers instead.
After graduation, he went to work for Brown Brothers Harriman. He later did a stint with the Olayan Group — Saudi Arabian- based holding company.
Eventually he moved to Jim Chanos’s hedge fund Kynikos Associates. Since Soros was a major client for Chanos, Bessent decided to make the move in 1991 to Soros Fund Management.Bessent, who is openly gay, quickly found success in the cut-throat world of finance.
He worked at Soros Fund Management from 1991-2000. By the age of 29, Bessent was running Soros’ European fund.
Soros’ decided to fire the unit and essentially disbanded the fund. But Bessent was left to manage a $300 million portfolio, about a third of the assets in Soros’s main fund at the time.
By the end of his tenure with Soros, Bessent was overseeing about $1.5 billion, generating annualized returns of 26.5%, the report said.
He left and decided to go solo and start his own hedge fund called Bessent Capital based in London and New York.
From the Telegraph:
“George is going to be 70 in August and I think his parameters have hanged. I am a young guy. If I were 20 years older, I would probably have the same attitude that he has and would be happy with double-digit returns. However, over the past nine years I have had a compound annual return of 30pc in Europe on a capital base of $1 billion to $2 billion and I hope to be able to replicate that.”
He was able to quickly raise $1 billion for his hedge fund.
However, he ended up losing more than 10% in his European stock fund in the first half of 2001. As a result, his investors started to pull out, so he decided to move back into macro investing. He ended up converting the fund in a family office format in 2005.
In 2007, he was appointed as director of research and strategy at Protégé Partners, a New York-based fund of funds, the Bloomberg report said.
While he was in the middle of his most recent project, which was forming KeySquare Group, a macro fund, he was recruited by Soros Fund Management.
When he was 38 year old, he was named one of Crain’s New York’s “40 Under 40,” a list that recognises New Yorkers from across different industries.
He doesn’t always win though.
Bessent purchased an 11-room Manhattan duplex in 2007 at 1 Sutton Place South for $12 million, $700,000 below the asking price.
The co-op belonged to Patricia Kennedy Lawford, the sister of John F. Kennedy. In 2009, he took a loss on the duplex when he sold it for $9.5 million to Joshua and Juliet Berkowitz.
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