EuroHedge Awards 2014

Man AHL, Chenavari, GSA, ISAM lead EuroHedge Awards 2014 winners


Man AHL, Chenavari, GSA Capital and ISAM Systematic led the line-up of winners at the 14th EuroHedge Awards last night – which were announced and presented at a big annual hedge fund industry dinner and awards ceremony held at London's Grosvenor House Hotel.

Click here to view the final nominations and winners

The publicly-listed Man Group's core AHL systematic strategy won the overall Fund of the Year after a year of remarkable recovery for managed futures funds – emerging victorious from a five-strong shortlist of contenders that had all produced returns in 2014 of more than 30%, in a year when the median return for the EuroHedge Composite Index was just 3%.

After several years of lacklustre performance, the spectacular bounce-back in the CTA space was one of the key defining features of the hedge fund industry in 2014 – with many leading systematic firms performing even better than they had done in their last banner year in 2008, and with AHL's dramatic revival last year also driving a strong rise in Man's share price.

Man's systematic team also triumphed in the Multi-Strategy category, winning that award with its Man AHL Dimension strategy in a year when the long-running AHL engine was firing on all cylinders again after what had been a tough few years for all CTA managers.

Chenavari, the high-performing credit specialist led by Loic Fery, landed the Management Firm of the Year award after beating off stiff competition from five other nominated firms this year – GSA Capital, Henderson/AlphaGen, Man AHL, Marshall Wace and Pharo.

Chenavari's victory reflected a year in which the group generated excellent risk-adjusted performance again across its suite of credit strategies – notably the firm's Chenavari Toro Capital fund, which also won the Long-Term Performance award for non-equity strategies in recognition of the structured credit strategy's stunning performance over the last five years.

Jon Hiscock's GSA Capital group was also a big winner on the night – taking home two trophies for its GSA International flagship fund in Equity Market Neutral & Quantitative Strategies (for the fourth time in the last six years) and also in Long-Term Performance – Equity Strategies (for a second year in succession), in a year when the firm's strong overall performance also saw its other quantitative investment funds winning nominations as well.

Further highlighting the remarkable performance of systematic strategies in what was a challenging and changeable 12 months for hedge fund managers across most other strategy areas, ex-Man CEO Stanley Fink's ISAM group won the award for Managed Futures funds with assets of over $500 million after its ISAM Systematic strategy gained over 60% in 2014.

Paul Mulvaney's Mulvaney Global Markets, which won the award for Managed Futures funds with assets of under $500m, also returned more than 60% last year – while another CTA strategy, the Palm Trend fund run by Swiss-based Progressive Capital Partners, took home the award for best Emerging Manager & Smaller Fund with a return in excess of 70%.

Among equity strategies, Jonathan Herbert's Camox Fund was a strong first-time winner of the European equity under $500 million award, in what was a tricky and volatile year for long/short European equity managers – while Alister Hibbert's BlackRock European hedge fund, another fund with a very strong and consistent multi-year performance track record, landed the award for European equity funds with assets of over $500 million.

In global equity, Henrik Rhenman's Rhenman Healthcare Long/Short Equity won by some distance the award for funds with assets below $500m after another sparkling year of performance with its specialist-sector global equity strategy – while Patrick Degorce's large and highly-rated Theleme fund was another well-deserving first-time victor at the Awards this year, taking the prize for global equity funds with assets of over $500 million.

Stockholm-based Lancelot Asset Management was also a first-time winner, claiming the award for Specialist Equity funds with its long-established Lancelot Camelot fund – and the Polunin Capital Partners Emerging Markets Active fund, which has also been running for a number of years, won a second successive victory in Emerging Market Equity with another very steady performance in an unpredictable and fast-changing year in emerging markets.

Mike Humphries' Polygon Convertible Opportunity also celebrated an impressive back-to-back victory in Convertibles & Volatility – achieving the outstanding record of winning that category in three out of the last four years, with another runaway victory in the sector in 2014 – while Cube Capital was a first-time winner in an exceptionally tight race in Event-Driven & Distressed, narrowly clinching that award with its Cube Global Opportunities fund.

Credit also produced a very close result indeed – with Paris-based debut winner LFIS Vision Credit Opportunities winning a neck-and-neck race for the credit award this year – while the Copenhagen-based Asgard Fixed Income fund, a previous winner at the Awards, took home the prize for fixed-income after a challenging and often surprising year in the bond markets.

A difficult and disappointing year for many large macro managers, meanwhile, produced an impressive first-time victory for the highly experienced team at Stone Milliner Macro – while emerging market specialist Finisterre took the award for Emerging Markets with its Finisterre Global Opportunity fund, marking a second victory in the category for the firm after having previously won the emerging markets award in 2011 with its Finisterre Sovereign Debt fund.

In a volatile and often fast-moving environment for funds focusing on commodities and currencies, Duet Commodities came through to win the Commodity & Currency award after a year in which many commodity funds struggled – and which was characterised, in the latter months of the year, by the dramatic fall in the oil price.

For best UCITS Equity Fund, an award introduced in recognition of the fast-growing number of UCITS-compliant hedge funds that are now operating in the industry as a result of the changing regulatory and investor environment, JP Morgan Asset Management won from a strong field of nine contenders with its JP Morgan – Europe Equity Absolute Alpha fund.

Finally, there were two very clear and compelling winners of the two New Fund of the Year prizes this year. London and Milan-based Kairos took the trophy for best new equity fund with its high-performing Kairos Pegasus fund – which launched in January last year and enjoyed a very impressive first 12 months in operation, returning more than 50% in 2014.

And Madrid-based Ben Oldman Special Situations won the other new fund award, for macro, fixed-income and relative value strategies – with an annualised return since its launch in July 2013 of over 40%, and with the fund making positive returns in all of its 18 months so far.

The EuroHedge Awards for 2014 paid recognition to those funds that had achieved the best risk-adjusted performance across a wide range of strategy areas and asset classes. More than 750 people attended the EuroHedge Awards gala dinner, including most of the leading managers, investors and service providers in the European hedge fund industry.

A full write-up of the Awards will appear in the February issue of EuroHedge.

For information on sponsoring the the 2015 Awards, please contact Ian Sanderson:
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