Loeb, Ziff whiff on NYC mayoral primaries; Icahn, Tepper, Soros picks win

By Rob Copeland

Thu Sep 12, 2013

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Balestra, Gates, Prince Street execs also among those left empty-handed as voters tee up November's election.


  Carl Icahn
  Carl Icahn (pictured) backed primary winning Republican nominee Joe Lhota. (Photo: Bloomberg)

Populist New York City mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio's win this week in the Democratic primary overrode the wishes of nearly all the hedge fund titans who donated to the race.

Neither $4,950 from Och-Ziff Capital Management part-owner Robert Ziff nor $5,775 from Prince Street Capital co-founder Peter McKown, nor even a personally hosted fundraiser from Third Point's Dan Loeb could push their preferred candidate Christine Quinn above a third place finish in the primaries.

Others donating to the soon-to-be jobless City Council speaker included Balestra Capital founder Jim Melcher, and Jeff Gates, founder of Gates Capital Management, according to New York City Campaign Finance Board records.

Relatively few hedge funders backed the winner de Blasio, the current New York City public advocate. Craig Nerenberg, co-founder of high-flying Brenner West Capital Management, gave $4,775, while George Soros chipped in $2,000.

John Petry, founder of event-driven Sessa Capital, was the only hedge fund maven to give at least $1,000 to free-spirited text messenger Anthony Weiner, who came in fifth in the primaries. No hedge fund employee gave four figures to silver medalist Bill Thompson or John Liu, the fourth place finisher.

On the Republican side of the aisle, those who gave ended on the winning side. Carl Icahn, the cantankerous chairman of Icahn Associates, donated the maximum to GOP nominee Joe Lhota. He was matched in that sum by David Tepper, founder of Appaloosa Management and Jeff Kaplan, Appaloosa's COO.

New Billion Dollar Club member Kieran Goodwin of King Street spinout Panning Capital Management also donated $4,950 to Lhota, along with Panning managing partner Franklin Edmonds.

No hedge funder donated $1,000 or more to second-place Republican finisher John Catsimatidis.

De Blasio and Lhota will face off Nov. 5 for a four year term in the mayor's office.

 Losers 
Justin Boisseau COO Gates Capital Management Quinn $4,950
Jeff Gates Founder Gates Capital Management Quinn $2,475
Ian Hague Co-Founder Firebird Management Quinn $4,950
Howard Kagan Ex-Managing Director Harbinger Capital Partners Quinn $2,450
Jonathan Lewinsohn Ex-Head of Research Anchorage Capital Quinn $4,950
Dan Loeb Founder Third Point Quinn $2,475
Peter McKown Co-Founder Prince Street Capital Quinn $5,775
Jim Melcher Founder Balestra Capital Quinn $2,000
John Petry Founder Sessa Capital Quinn/Weiner $3,500
Adam Sender Founder Exis Capital Management Quinn $4,950
Joshua Targoff COO Third Point Quinn $2,475
Robert Ziff n/a Och-Ziff Capital Management Quinn $4,950

 Winners
Andrew Busser Co-Founder Symphony Capital Lhota $1,000
Nikola Duravcevic Portfolio Manager Seneca Capital de Blasio $1,000
Franklin Edmonds Managing Partner Panning Capital Management   $4,950
Kieran Goodwin Founder Panning Capital Management Lhota $4,950
Carl Icahn Chairman Icahn Associates Lhota $4,950
Jeff Kaplan COO Appaloosa Management Lhota $4,950
John McKowan Senior Vice President Paulson & Co. Lhota $1,000
Craig Nerenberg Co-Founder Brenner West Capital de Blasio $4,775
Matthew Sirovich Co-Founder Scopia Capital Management Lhota $1,000
George Soros Founder Soros Fund Management de Blasio $2,000
David Tepper Founder Appaloosa Management Lhota $4,950

See also:  Seth Klarman boosts Cory Booker for Senate I  Tom Steyer hosts Obama at Democratic fundraiser I  Obama considering Orin Kramer for top Treasury role

Note: Fundraising figures include total contributions of at least $1,000 made in 2011, 2012 or 2013.

ISSN: 2151-1845 / CDC10004H