One year ago
»» Wingspan Investment Management was raising money and hiring bodies as it approached its March 2013 launch. The fund, founded by former Goldman Buckley “Buck” Ratchford, drew $250 million in seed capital from Reservoir Capital.
A calendar year—and eight months of trading—later, the fund boasts a net return of 14.06% through the end of October. Though it says all of its five strategies have made money, its special situations, distressed credit, and liquidation/legal strategies were the biggest contributors to its performance.
The firm has also raised money; Wingspan now has $345 million under management and is open to new investments. “Being a small, nimble player, there’s a tremendous opportunity in our space,” said Brendan Driscoll, Wingspan’s CFO.
Wingspan’s team has nearly doubled, to 12 people. In mid-June, the firm hired Ryan FitzSimons, formerly a vice president on Goldman Sachs’s capital introductions team, to head business development and marketing. The firm has also built out its back office to a team of four.
Five years ago
»» John Paulson’s Paulson & Co. stole the show at the 2008 Absolute Return awards dinner, where it won awards for the best event-driven fund, the best distressed fund, and management firm of the year. “Light will shine on this industry again,” Paulson told the crowd. “There will be better times. So I encourage everyone that may not be doing as well as they have in the past to stay focused.”
Paulson & Co.’s funds outperformed the markets by a wide margin in 2007 and 2008; in those years its flagship Advantage Fund was up 158.58% and 37.64%, respectively. However, Paulson’s performance has been less impressive in the years since. The same fund lost 52.48% in 2011 and 21.42% in 2012, but is up 15.69% this year through the end of September.