A Swiss and an Australian firm have shuttered poorly performing alternative strategies, as the tough environment for investors continues to take its toll.
Geneva-based Syz & Co has closed its Oyster Multi-Manager Asia product, a fund of hedge funds that had heavy exposure to China managers and assets of about $15 million.
Launched in 2004, the fund was closed on January 31, a spokesman for Syz confirmed. The portfolio has been merged with the Oyster Multi-Strategy Fund, he added.
Oyster Multi-Manager Asia had 37.5% of its portfolio invested in China hedge funds as of November, with Syz preferring managers with an onshore presence. It had 29.8% exposure to Asia-Pacific-focused strategies and 11% to Japanese hedge funds. The rest was spread among international, emerging Asia and global emerging market strategies.
The FoHF posted flat performance last year and was loss-making in the previous two years.
Syz, which runs about $26 billion in assets, says the closure of the Asian multi-manager fund "does not mean we're no longer positive about Asian hedge funds", says the spokesman. However, the small size of the fund made it an inefficient way for shareholders to invest in the strategy, he adds.
Separately, Queensland Investment Corporation (QIC) – which manages $67 billion in assets on behalf of the northeast Australian state – has shuttered its Asia-Pacific-focused quantitative fund and also the boutique quant unit under which it was managed.
The unit, QIC Quantitative Management, was set up in 2008 and run by a three-person team. Two of them – Joe Cole and Michiel Swaak – have left QIC, while Timothy Sharp remains with the firm in a different capacity, a spokeswoman tells AsianInvestor.
QIC Asia Pacific Market Neutral Fund was launched in 2009 and had about $19 million in AUM at the time of its closure, says the spokeswoman. The fund is in the process of winding down, and the liquidation process began in September.
Although it gained 6.7% in the first eight months of last year, the fund was down -2.83% in 2011 and up only 0.7% in 2010. It took long and short positions in equities and futures across Asian markets.