The New York-based hedge fund Eton Park has expanded its operations into Asia and has opened offices in Hong KongÆs Cheung Kong Centre.

Concurrently, Eton Park has hired Barbara Yu to work in its Hong Kong office. She was formerly an executive director at Goldman Sachs in Hong Kong working on the proprietary trading desk, and left that firm earlier this year.Yu is traveling and unavailable for comment.

Eton Park was established in 2004 by Eric Mindich, pulling together start-up assets in excess of $3 billion. He holds the honour of being Goldman SachsÆ youngest-ever partner, reaching those giddy heights at the age of 27, having built his reputation in the risk arbitrage department. He later became co-head of equities at Goldman, quitting at the age of 36 to start his own hedge fund.

Eton Park was one of the biggest hedge fund start-ups on record and his former employers, colleagues and university (Harvard), are understood to have chipped in. At the time Mindich said that he would cast his net wider than North America and would invest in emerging markets. This Hong Kong move would seem to be a logical extension of that philosophy.

The fund returned 12.8% in 2005. Its investment strategies are split into three areas, fundamental bottom-up, equities/derivatives related and volatility trading and illiquid investments including private equity. The split between traditional equity strategies and convergence-style private equity deals has been estimated at 70/30. Elsewhere, the fund has offices in New York and London and is has over 70 employees, many of whom have a Goldman Sachs pedigree.