When V-Nee Yeh, chairman of the Hong Kong-based, $660
million distressed-focused shop Argyle Street Management,
launched the firm in 2002, he knew that distressed asset
management, in its classic sense, did not exist in Asia. This
stemmed from the difference in capital structure complexity of
companies and regulatory regimes between developed and
undeveloped markets, something that has not really changed even
almost a decade later.
In the Asian landscape dominated by family-controlled
companies, deep relationships and focus on distressed vendors
rather than on distressed assets is what provides the edge in
terms of real investment opportunities-something Yeh and his
partners sensed early on, and used as the basis to build their
business as well as a rather unique model of distressed
investing in Asia.
"I believe [that] in ASM I have found the Value Partners of
Asian distressed assets. It is akin to an Asian ex-Japan
distressed asset/special opportunities...