By Summer Zhen
HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong-based Infini Capital Management launched a new multi-manager investment fund starting on Nov. 1, increasing hedge fund competition in the heated multi-manager battleground.
The Hong Kong manager is also planning to expand its footprint into Abu Dhabi next year.
The new flagship fund, Infini Global Master Fund, kicked off trading with self-seeded capital from its previous proprietary fund. Infini is aiming to grow the fund, which takes external investors, to $1 billion through 2024, according to two sources familiar with the matter.
The launch comes amid a surge of investor interest in multi-manager platforms that can deploy capital across different asset classes and aim to generate returns regardless of economic cycles. Multi-manager funds have been outperforming the wider industry in the past few years.
From January to July, the firm’s previous Infini Master Fund gained 20%, said one of the sources.
The rise of multi-manager platforms is reshaping the Asian hedge fund market, which used to be dominated by traditional single-manager equity funds. But many have suffered from a slump in China’s stock markets in the past two years.
Infini, founded by Tony Chin, a former Morgan Stanley banker, has been on a hiring spree this year. The fund now has about eight to 10 portfolio managers and is hiring more staff, according to one of the sources.
On the non-trading side, the firm recently filled a raft of senior roles from bigger rivals. Jennifer Wong joined Infini in September from Pinpoint as head of IR, Stephanie Chen joined as chief risk officer from Dymon Asia, while it hired Connie Phillips as chief financial officer from BFAM, and Cora Ang as general counsel and chief compliance officer from Hillhouse.
Infini also appointed a new COO David Leahy, an ex-managing director at JP Morgan.
Infini declined to comment on the fund details but confirmed the hiring of the middle and back office staff.
In a reply to Reuters, the firm’s spokesperson said it is looking to set up an office in Abu Dhabi in the first quarter of 2024, as a first step to operate beyond Hong Kong, citing Abu Dhabi’s “robust and sophisticated regulatory environment”, and its closer access to UK and Europe time zones as key reasons.
“We will share operations and resources between the two offices,” the spokesperson said.
(Reporting by Summer Zhen; Editing by Kim Coghill)