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Hedge funds: First Avenue taps Brazil with fund of funds

First Avenue Partners, a hedge fund advisory firm based in New York and London, is raising money for a new multi-strategy fund of hedge funds investment vehicle that will focus on Brazilian managers. The fund, which will be managed by Brazilian investment boutique Arsenal Investimentos, plans to raise $300 million.

The Arsenal fund provides investors with access to offshore and onshore Brazilian hedge fund managers active in Brazilian financial instruments. It aims for minimum returns of 15%, with strategies including discretionary macro equity hedge, fixed income, equity arbitrage and long/short equity.

There are 350 single managers in Brazil and they are set to become a stronger force as the Brazilian investment fund industry continues to experience healthy growth. Total assets under management grew 94.83% between December 2000 and June 2007, reaching $539 billion.

In line with this growth, investment strategies have broadened – by the turn of the year there were already three quantitative funds open in Brazil: Principia, SLW and Capitania Vector. A fourth is due to launch in April. The quant funds illustrate clearly the growing potential of the Brazilian hedge fund market and its improving liquidity, especially in blue-chip investments.

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