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Polar Capital acquires long-only manager HIM Capital

Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Opalesque Industry Update - Polar Capital Holdings plc announces that it has exchanged contracts for the acquisition of HIM Capital Holdings Limited, a specialist fund manager with an established track record of managing financial funds, which has approximately $230 million of assets under management. The acquisition, which is expected to complete before the month end, will establish a strong financials sector franchise within the Group which is in line with Polar Capital’s established growth strategy.

HIM's subsidiary, HIM Capital Limited, was formerly called Hiscox Investment Management prior to the management buyout of the business from Hiscox plc at the end of 2007. HIM Capital has been managing financial funds since 1993 and currently has the following four open ended, long only funds invested in the financial sector: Hiscox Insurance Portfolio Fund, Hiscox Far Eastern Financial Fund, Hiscox European Financial Fund and HIM Income Fund. All four funds have significantly outperformed their benchmarks since launch.

The Hiscox Far Eastern Fund won the prestigious Lipper financials sector prize in the UK in 2010, while the Hiscox Insurance Portfolio Fund won the Lipper financials sector prize in Switzerland in 2009. Both of these funds are five star rated by Morningstar.

Commenting on the acquisition, Tim Woolley, Chief Executive of Polar Capital, said:

“We are absolutely delighted to be incorporating the HIM Capital team into the Group and establishing such a strong financials sector franchise for Polar Capital. The acquisition is in line with the Group’s ambition to accelerate growth by attracting new investment talent and building sector specialist platforms from which we can develop the business and enhance returns to our shareholders. It is testament to the strength of our brand that we have been able to attract the HIM Capital team, which offers a unique group of highly experienced fund managers and a balanced portfolio of long-only funds with outstanding track records. We look forward to working with the team and capitalizing on Polar Capital’s strong distribution network to unlock further value in these funds.”

Alec Foster, Chairman of HIM Capital, added:

“This is an exciting opportunity for the HIM Capital team to continue building on the excellent track records of our funds. The combination with Polar Capital provides access to an established platform to broaden the shareholder base of our funds through their distribution network. We look forward to working with the Polar Capital team to achieve these goals.” Corporate website: http://www.polarcapital.co.uk

(press release)

About Polar Capital

Polar Capital is a research driven investment management company providing a highly entrepreneurial environment for outstanding portfolio managers within a structure that offers a level of marketing, administrative and operational support normally found in much larger organisations.

Our objective is to achieve strong, sustainable earnings and dividend growth by building a highly diversified family of long-only, long-bias, equity long/short and other fundamentally driven hedge fund strategies managed under the Polar Capital brand.

Today Polar Capital has a staff of 55 of whom 28 are investment professionals managing 10 funds and seven managed accounts. These funds, which are aimed at institutional and professional investors, have combined assets under management as at 30 June 2010 $2.6 bn, $1.6 bn of which are within long only funds. Polar Capital has offices in London and Tokyo.

About HIM Capital

HIM Capital is a specialist fund manager with an established track record of managing financial funds. HIM Capital was formerly a subsidiary of Hiscox plc prior to the management buy-out of HIM Capital at the end of 2007. As part of Hiscox plc, HIM Capital was known as Hiscox Investment Management, an FSA regulated entity, which was formed in 1996. A new company, HIM Capital Holdings Limited, was formed for the purpose of the management buyout. HIM Capital’s directors and staff together own 60% of the company with Hiscox plc owning 40%.

Hiscox Insurance Portfolio Fund AUM £63m at 31 Aug 2010 (launched in 1998)
The only European vehicle for investing in insurance industry companies on a global basis. Managed by Alec Foster and Nick Martin

Hiscox Far Eastern Financial Fund AUM US$59m (£38m) at 31 Aug 2010 (launched in 1996)
The only European vehicle dedicated to investment in financial companies in Asia excluding Japan. Managed by John Yakas

Hiscox European Financial Fund AUM €24m (£20m) at 31 Aug 2010 (launched in 1993)
Invests in European financial companies. Managed by John Yakas

HIM Income Fund AUM £27m at 31 Aug 2010 (launched in 2009)
Invests for income in financial companies worldwide. Managed by Nick Brind

- FG

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