Looking back on JANA's management change

By Rob Copeland

Tue Jul 23, 2013

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Absolute Return also revisits the MFA's opposition to commodities curbs.


One year ago

>> JANA Partners shifted co-founder Gary Claar from co-portfolio manager to a "senior advisor" role.

The transition has been smooth. The flagship event driven JANA ended 2012 up 23.16%, beating the Absolute Return Event Driven Index and earning a nomination at the Absolute Return Awards. This year, it is up a further 10.25%, almost double the benchmark (see performance for all of the firm's funds here).

"We expected that 2013 would be a fruitful year for our strategy given the favorable backdrop for equities broadly, the availability of financing at attractive rates, the need for companies to augment tepid organic growth through strategic M&A, and the amount of private equity capital on the sidelines," founder Barry Rosenstein wrote in his first quarter letter. "We have seen confirmation of these trends, and we believe the strong stock market outperformance enjoyed by those corporations whose management teams are actively seeking to unlock shareholder value is affirmation of our thesis and our strategy,"

Firmwide assets rocked to $5.76 billion this month, up from $3.2 billion a year ago. That likely means plenty of work for new head of marketing and IR Jordan Gershuny, who was hired from FrontPoint Partners in December.

JANA partner Charlie Penner did not respond to a request for comment.

See also: JANA Nirvana poised to join Ohio event-driven roster I Sans Loeb, no protest heard at pension summit

Five years ago

>> The Managed Futures Association, the main U.S. hedge fund lobbying group, opposed commodities curbs threatened by politicians in Washington, D.C.

No such restrictions were immediately passed. The 2010 Dodd-Frank Act wound up instructing the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to write new rules regulating the swaps marketplace, debate over which continues to today. Proposed rules and orders are available here.

The head of the MFA now is Bill Goodell, chief operating officer of Maverick Capital. Both the MFA and the Alternative Investment Management Association continue to push for a global approach to regulatory issues, rather than one that could leave American funds at a disadvantage, according to a column from AIMA chair Kathleen Casey in the HedgeFund Intelligence Global Review.

See also: Service providers, investor advocates on opposing sides for JOBS Act I Are hedge fund trade associations aggressive enough? I New AIMA chair Casey talks shadow banking, SEC reporting, hedge fund public image

ISSN: 2151-1845 / CDC10004H