If you have "Apollo 13 ingenuity, James Bond style, Terminator determination and Animal House camaraderie," you might be able to work at Contrarian Capital, the fictitious venture capital firm featured on the Web site, http://www.myaxys.com/ccapital/index.html. The brain child of Gil Travish, a senior staff scientist at UCLA working on particle accelerators, is a joke and not Contrarian Capital Management, a Greenwich, Ct.-based hedge fund. But not everyone has caught on. "Over the last few years, occasionally I have gotten people who want serious investments sending over material," Travish said. "It's just amazing and they are quite serious, they really think they can get money." Along with proposals, he has received mail for the real Contrarian, including legal documents. Travish said he made a few phone calls to lawyers and investors trying to straighten out the confusion. At some point those parties must have caught on because he stopped receiving their mail. Contrarian Capital Management declined comment as did Beth Alter, a lawyer at Seward & Kissel, who sent Travish an email on behalf of Contrarian regarding the similar name. Travish has since changed the name on the Web site to C-Capital.
Travish came up with the idea after dealing with a number of venture capitalists in the late '90s while he and three business partners were looking for funding for a wireless business card. Frustrated with the meetings and the lingo, he created the site in 2001 and named it after contrarian investors who go against the trend. He did not know there was a real firm named Contrarian Capital Management. The ficticious CC offers employment as well as investments. The firm only expects you to fill out a personality profile on the internet dating site, Match.com. "This proven and standardized system lets us understand what kind of person you are and if you fit in with the CC culture. If you can't sell yourself to a cyber date, you aren't going to impress us," the site declares. For those looking for money and looking past "the new thing" as the site declares, look to CC. They "transcend newness...are neo-new... post-neo-new, even." Just don't send your business plan or any mail intended for Contrarian Capital Management.