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Ignis and Castle Hill start strategic partnership; Castle Hill launches Total Return fund with $50m seed

Thursday, February 04, 2010
Opalesque Industry Update – London-based group Ignis Asset Management has entered into a strategic partnership with Castle Hill Asset Management.

Castle Hill is a specialist credit investment manager with more than $2.0 billion of gross assets under management. These assets include sub-advisory mandates from Ignis Asset Management invested across two leveraged loan portfolios as well as one long-short credit portfolio.

Castle Hill is also simultaneously launching the Castle Hill Total Return Fund, a hedge fund focused on opportunistic credit strategies and capital structure arbitrage. The Total Return Fund has been seeded with approximately $50 million of capital by Castle Hill employees and associates (see initial announcement here).

Castle Hill, which is majority employee-owned, is a US- and UK-based asset management company consisting of nine highly experienced founding members. Brian Bassett, chairman, and Jaime Vieser, chief executive officer, are the co-principles of the investment manager. Brian and Jaime are joined by Craig Abouchar, Vikram Govindan, Philip Grose, Ross Mandeville, Sven Olson, Sasha Vlahcevic and Fraser Brown. Ignis will hold a 49% interest in Castle Hill and will have two Ignis executives on the Board, Jonathan Polin and Chris Fellingham.

Brian Bassett, chairman of Castle Hill Asset Management, says;

“Castle Hill Asset Management is thrilled to commence operations with Ignis as our partner. Having worked closely with the Ignis staff we are confident that we can benefit from Ignis’s strong infrastructure, deep relationships in the market and proven experience in managing joint-venture relationships.”

Jonathan Polin, sales and marketing director, Ignis Asset Management, says;

“We are delighted to be a significant shareholder in Castle Hill, which is an important strategic investment for us in this highly specialist area. Brian and his team have built up an excellent reputation in the market whilst working at Ignis and we are sure they will be successful in managing the assets we have out-sourced to them as well as gathering significant third party assets with us.”


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