GoldenTree Asset Management is setting up a London office headed by David Allen, partner and portfolio manager. Tom O'Shea, also a partner and portfolio manager, will be joining him. "Given our size, we like to see all opportunities globally, and while we have been active players in Europe, we think we can do more by having a local presence," said Allen, who will be moving in June. "We will be actively following the bond, loan, convert and equity markets."
In March, the firm announced it was exploring new strategies, including a London office, as the New York-based manager dealt with a low volatility market and too much capital chasing assets. "Our problem isn't raising assets; it's deploying assets," said Leon Wagner, chairman (LMW, 3/11). "Europe is very rich as well, but we have come to the conclusion that we want to be on the ground to take advantage of opportunities," he said.
GoldenTree, which has close to $7 billion in assets under management, is also exiting the long-only separate account business -- returning $1.2 billion to investors--and is considering starting a multi-strategy credit fund to incorporate all of its businesses.
Allen will focus on European markets and, to a lesser extent, on Asia and the Middle East, working closely with Steve Tananbaum, the company's global cio. O'Shea had previously been helping to run loan portfolios in the U.S. with Fred Haddad.
There has recently been a flood of interest in Europe from U.S. managers. Credit Suisse First Boston's Leveraged Investments Group has hired Glenn Clarke from AIB Capital Markets (4/15). Prudential has lured a team from NIB Capital and in early April, Highland Capital Management completed its acquisition of ING Capital Management's European loan group. In addition, The Carlyle Group completed its first European CLO last month and Babson Capital Management has developed a major presence following the acquisition of Duke Street Capital Debt Management.