Pirate Capital, the controversial Norwalk, Conn., activist hedge fund with a certain flair for stumbling over its own sword, returned half its remaining assets last month after an encounter with a British man o’ war, Client Concentration Risk. With his war chest now down to around $400 million—from almost $2 billion in early 2006—and after staging a comeback from a series of pratfalls last year, founder Tom Hudson must be feeling, well, as sick as a parrot.
GAM, the London-based fund of funds manager now controlled by Julius Baer Group, pulled as much as $300 million last month, according to Wednesday’s edition of Hedge Fund Alert; other investors also took advantage of the Jun. 30 window to scuttle with smaller sums.
The newsletter’s unattributed speculation that GAM had grown concerned about its size relative to Pirate’s capital base—while it’s a rule often breached, queasy tummies and Dramamine calls start at 15 percent—is credible. But it may also be a call by the highly-regarded investor that the activist shtick in general, and especially the low-rent baseball cap and t-shirts variant favored by Hudson, might have run its course for a while.
GAM has washed its hands of Pirate just as Pirate’s latest boarding party is clambering over Angelica Corp (AGL), a Missouri-based...laundry contractor. Soap operas all round, one way or another.
GAM Yanks Major Sum From Pirate Capital (not linkable)
Hedge Fund Alert Jul. 18 2007
Earlier Pirate encounters on NakedShorts. More Pirate history, ancient and modern, after the jump.
Hudson trades barbs with target
FinAlternatives Jul. 18 2007
Mutiny at Pirate Capital Roils Hudson After Worst Year Ever
by Anthony Effinger and Katherine Burton
Bloomberg Feb. 2 2007
Pirate Capital’s Hudson Pledges Improved Returns
by Katherine Burton and Jenny Strasburg
Bloomberg Sep. 29 2006