Former managing director and portfolio manager at Singapore hedge fund Artradis, Ian Roberts, has co-founded an investment/corporate finance advisory boutique called Blackpeak, which launched yesterday.

The firm has completed its first round of capital-raising, part of which has been subscribed by Vulpes Investment Management, the firm that Steve Diggle founded after the Artradis firm he co-founded was wound up.

Roberts is joined by Jack Clode and Chris Leahy, both former executives of Kroll Associates, and Nicholas Bryan-Brown, ex-head of HSBC Investment Banking.

Roberts and Bryan-Brown will be based in Singapore, Clode and Leahy are located in Hong Kong. They also have an office in Tokyo and plan to open a further office in China.

AsianInvestor asked Leahy whether now was a tricky time to launch, given market volatility and uncertainties. “You're right about the timing, but there's not much anyone can do about that,” he replies. “Some of our work will be counter-cyclical anyhow. We have existing clients and have already closed some advisory mandates."

They are covering pan-Asian markets for multinational customers who want to participate in the region. Their gamut of products includes corporate advisory, investment sourcing, risk consulting and transaction execution in Asia. Blackpeak also plans to co-invest alongside their clients in selected deals.