Having promoted its services in Asia for several years, the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (Caia) Association will launch its Hong Kong chapter at the city's China Club tomorrow.

The Caia Association is a US-based educational organisation that teaches and examines its pupils on the subjects of hedge funds, private equity, commodities, real estate and managed futures. The purpose is to turn out graduates who can wax lyrical on alternatives issues -- no bad thing perhaps, as many feel expertise is lacking in this area in Asia.

By the time one has finished the Caia exams and is versed in the blarney of alternative investments, swotty graduates will be able to impress job interviewers by dropping terms such as 'linear interpolation', 'leptokurtic', 'platykurtic' and 'look-ahead bias', all of which fall within the curriculum.

At the event, a panel of wise old owls will debate "The Alternative Investment Industry in 2010, a Global Perspective" and probably explain many of these buzzwords.

"Caia's success has been almost literally exponential, with charter-holder numbers growing at 80% per year since we started in 2003," says Peter Douglas, Singapore-based principal of fund research firm GFIA and member of the Caia board of directors.

"It's great to see that Hong Kong has the critical mass of alternative investment professionals to warrant its own Caia chapter," he adds. "[This is] a very satisfying milestone for Caia, and proof of the professionalism of the Hong Kong industry."

In the panel -- moderated by Craig Asche, executive director of the association -- Douglas will be joined by Florence Lombard, executive director of the Alternative Investment Management Association (Aima) and Todd Groomer, non-executive chairman of Aima and managing director of Diversified Global Asset Management, a Toronto-based active manager of funds of hedge funds.