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High-yield high-fliers

After 11 years at Mackay Shields, Steven Tananbaum concluded that there was room for a new player in the limited field of top-quality high-yield asset management. The result was Golden Tree Asset Management.

Steven Tananbaum: founded GoldenTree with a handful of colleagues

STEVEN TANANBAUM IS well regarded in the asset management business. "Given Steve's track record at MacKay, it's no real surprise that he managed to achieve all that he has. He runs a very smart, very market-savvy business." So says Joe McGrath, head of leveraged finance for Goldman Sachs, one of the top-three high-yield underwriters in the US. It's rare, of course, for bankers not to speak well of their investor clients in public, but in the case of GoldenTree Asset Management the plaudits seem well deserved.

Tananbaum (pictured right) founded GoldenTree in March 2000 with a handful of colleagues, one confirmed client and $70 million to manage. Now he's president and chief investment officer of a company with $5.5 billion under management and 60 staff.

Investment banks seemed to be confident of his ability to get it right almost from the start. According to Leon Wagner, co-founder and chairman of GoldenTree, "back when we had very few assets to manage, Wall Street covered us as if we were going to succeed".

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