From a fledgling business, largely unnoticed by the outside world only a few years ago, South Africa's hedge funds are rapidly evolving into an impressive industry. Despite having to deal with regulatory handicaps, such as currency exchange controls and a 'grey' regulatory environment, South Africa's hedge fund managers are creating a sophisticated industry, which stands out among global emerging markets.
After a long period of international isolation resulting from decades of apartheid government, South Africa has regained its place within the global economic system. A booming economy and relative political stability are playing a major role in allowing hedge funds to flourish. "New funds are being started at a phenomenal rate," says Lizelle Steyn, manager of alternative investments at Nedgroup Investments. "According to our database, there were about 65 hedge funds one year ago, and now it's up to 84 hedge funds."
Lizelle Steyn, Nedgroup Investments
From a negligible asset...