April 4, 2005

Uncovered positions in hedge fund world

Alan Lewis is managing director of Sthenos Capital, a London hedge fund manager that closed its funds at the end of 2004. Daniel Loeb is chief executive of Third Point, a US hedge fund manager. Mudlark has confirmed that the e-mail exchange below - reproduced verbatim apart from minor style changes - is genuine.

From: Alan Lewis To: Daniel Loeb March 22 2005 Daniel, thanks for calling earlier today. Enclosed is my CV for your review. I look forward to following up with you when you have more time. Best regards, Alan.

From: Daniel Loeb To: Alan Lewis March 28 2005 What are your three best current European ideas?

From: Alan Lewis To: Daniel Loeb March 28 2005 Daniel, I am sorry but it does not interest me to move forward in this way. If you wish to have a proper discussion about what you are looking to accomplish in Europe, and see how I might fit in, fine. Lesson one of dealing in Europe: business is not conducted in the same informal manner as in the US. Best regards, Alan.

From: Daniel Loeb To: Alan Lewis March 28 2005 One idea would suffice.

We are an aggressive performance-oriented fund looking for blood-thirsty competitive individuals, who show initiative and drive, to make outstanding investments.

This is why I have built Third Point into a $3bn (1.6bn) fund with average net returns of 30 per cent over 10 years. We find most Brits are a bit set in their ways and prefer to knock back a pint at the pub and go shooting on weekends rather than work hard. Lifestyle choices are important and knowing one's limitations with respect to dealing in a competitive environment is too. That is Lesson one at my shop. It is good that we learnt about this incompatibility early in the process and I wish you all the best in your career in traditional fund management.

From: Alan Lewis To: Daniel Loeb March 28 2005 Daniel, I guess your reputation is proven correct. I have not been in traditional fund management for more than 11 years. I did not achieve the success I have by knocking back a pint, as you say. I am aggressive, and I do love this business.

I am half American and half French, and having spent more than half my life on this side of the pond I think I know a little something about how one conducts business in the UK and Europe.

There are many opportunities in the UK and Europe, shareholder regard is only beginning to be accepted and understood. However, if you come here and handle it in the same brash way you have in the US, I guarantee you will fail. Things are done differently here. Yes, place in society still matters, where one went to school etc. It will take tact and patience (traits you obviously do not have) to succeed in this arena. Good luck! Alan.

From: Daniel Loeb To: Alan Lewis March 28 2005 Well, you will have plenty of time to discuss your "place in society" with the other fellows at the club. I love the idea of a French/English unemployed guy, whose fund just blew up, telling me that I am going to fail.

At Third Point, like the financial markets in general, "one's place in society" does not matter at all. We are a bunch of scrappy guys from diverse backgrounds (Jewish Muslim, Hindu etc) who enjoy outwitting pompous asses, like yourself, in financial markets globally.

Your "inexplicable insouciance" and disrespect is fascinating; It must be a French/English aristocratic thing. I will be following your "career" with great interest.

I have copied Patrick so that he can introduce you to people who might be a better fit. There must be an insurance company or mutual fund out there for you. Dan Loeb.

From: Alan Lewis To: Daniel Loeb March 28 2005 Hubris.

From: Daniel Loeb To: Alan Lewis March 28 2005 Laziness.

FT.com

Posted by Martin Sewell at April 4, 2005 2:42 PM | TrackBack