Former Elliott investor Markel to launch fund -sources

By Nell Mackenzie

LONDON (Reuters) – Former Elliott Investment Management investor Leo Markel will launch a London-based fund called Finch Bay Capital in the first quarter of 2024 and expects to raise $500 million by the end of that year, said two sources familiar with the matter.

A representative for Finch Bay declined to comment.

Markel, who will act as the company’s CIO, is co-founding the activist fund with former ValueAct employee Daniel Urdaneta, the sources said.

The fund will take activist positions in companies but will also hedge its positions to protect the fund’s performance against market risk and is therefore calling itself market neutral.

It will focus on corporate strategy for mid-sized companies in Europe and the U.S. typically with market caps of over $1 billion.

The focus would be this rather than management change, said a person close to the matter.

Thierry Vanlancker, who was the chief executive of AkzoNobel during the period in which Elliot was invested in the firm and worked with Markel there, will also join Finch Bay Capital as a senior adviser and investor.

(This story has been refiled to clarify the titles of Markel and Urdaneta in paragraphs 1 and 3)

(Reporting by Nell Mackenzie; editing by Dhara Ranasinghe and Jason Neely)