Sunday, 22 February 2009

Troika returns to Russia after Cohen exit

Financial News

Jason Corcoran in Moscow

16 February 2009

Russian investment bank Troika Dialog has moved the management of its hedge fund business from London to Moscow following the departure of its chief executive Stephen Cohen last year.

A Troika spokeswoman said the fund was now being run by an investment committee and its two portfolio managers are Oleg Larichev and Vladimir Potapov.

Larichev is chief investment officer at the bank’s fund management subsidiary Troika Dialog Asset Management and Potapov, who joined the group in 2003 as an intern, has been a fund manager for several years.

Cohen joined Troika as head of its hedge fund business in 2006 after being made redundant as head of European business at Putnam Investments. He quit Troika in August last year, re-emerging at UK fund manager Montanaro in October as a director with responsibility for business development.

Of his departure from Troika, Cohen said: “They had wanted me to relocate to Moscow, but I could not for various personal reasons. I was trying to build an international product so Russians could invest outside of Russia but there was little demand. The product was no longer valid so it was logical to move the business to Moscow.”

Cohen said the Cayman Islands-registered Troika Russian fund had once totalled $200m but had been “whacked for performance” over the past six months.

Troika said Cohen’s departure had pre-dated the financial crisis in Russia but declined to comment on the circumstances. A number of Russian hedge funds have closed recently or “gated” investors’ ability to withdraw funds during a 75% decline in the stock market and a deteriorating investment climate for minority shareholders.

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