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Alternative Market Briefing

French alternative asset manager says being French is a problem

Friday, March 21, 2014

Benedicte Gravrand, Opalesque Geneva:

ABC Arbitrage, a French trading group that runs an alternative asset manager specializing in arbitrage strategies, saw its net revenues go down by 46% from last year, reportedly due to central bank intervention, more taxes and new regulations. It is planning to make up for it through innovation, product development, staff hire and expansion abroad.

ABC’s net revenues stand at €28.8m for 2013 compared to €53m in 2012. Fee income generated by the asset management business fell by 22% over the year to €4.8m, while assets under management stood at €253m at 1 March 2014.

"Massive intervention by the central banks had a structural impact on market behaviour and risk profiles, making transactions more complex to evaluate," ABC’s announcement says. "In addition, an increased tax burden and new regulatory requirements forced us to adapt continuously to make up for the resulting significant opportunity losses."

The firm laid down plans to stimulate growth, which will include hiring more staff, expand geographically, continue to invest in innovation, and develop "diversified investment funds and rebuild assets under management to over €400m."

With regards to the geographical expansion, the group has already started doing so with a new Irish company, Q......................

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