Unigestion’s ex-head of hedge funds to launch Gougenheim Investments

Philippe Gougenheim (pictured), former head of hedge funds at Swiss group Unigestion, has announced the launch of his new management company, Gougenheim Investments, based in Pfaffikon, Switzerland.

The company will launch a global macro hedge fund named the Glasnost Fund in June, according to Gougenheim.

Its positions will be implemented through a combination of systematic modelling of the financial environment and of discretionary macroeconomic views.

The Glasnost Fund will offer weekly liquidity, transparency of positions and views on a monthly basis. It will adhere to strict risk management rules aiming at capital protection while targeting attractive returns.

Gougenheim said “the Glasnost Fund will be everything that hedge funds usually are not: liquid, transparent and sound.”

The Russian word Glasnost means openness and transparency and is used to describe Russian policy in the 1980s under Mikhail Gorbachev.

Global macro hedge funds have seen a boost in popularity as investors seek strategies offering diversification from equity and fixed income returns.

Barclays Capital forecast in its industry prognosis for 2012 hedge funds would take net inflows of $80bn this year despite recording their second worst year of performance in two decades in 2011.

The bank said investors plan to put about two thirds of new money into strategies typically thought to deal better with difficult markets, including global macro, systematic and volatility-based strategies.

However Gougenheim may have to work hard to convince investors as the majority of global macro hedge funds produced disappointing performance last year, with the HFRX Global Macro/CTA down 4.88% in 2011.

Unigestion has recently announced Gougenheim’s replacement at the alternatives specialist. It has promoted Nicolas Rousselet to head its $3.7bn hedge fund investment activities and be a managing director in Geneva.

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