As you may have heard, hedge fund manager Louis Bacon is in a bit of a tiff with “Canadian clothing magnate” Peter Nygard, his neighbor in Nassau. While the genesis of the argument is unclear, Bacon appears to have been upset with Nygard for doing some environmentally questionable things in the area, while Nygard claims Bacon’s beef is that he wouldn’t sell the Moore Capital founder his land. Typically, when rich people live within close proximity of one another, disagreements quickly devolve into amazingly petty wars of words and actions between two people with little to lose and unlimited resources with which to do things, like, say, cut down each other’s shrubs without asking. Any past feuds between the exceedingly wealthy, though have been complete and total child’s play compared to Bacon v. Nygard, in which:
* Bacon has claimed Nygard paid off a group of people to march around carrying signs linking Bacon to the KKK.
* Nygard has claimed an assistant of Bacon’s, acting on orders from his boss, blasted the most annoying sounds in the world from “military grade speakers” directly into Nygard’s bedroom, as a message not to fuck with Bacon.
* Nygard has claimed Bacon also dispatched an assistant to burn down his neighbor’s house. Read more »
A team of nine from the now-defunct London office of SAC Capital Advisors LP has joined Louis Bacon’s $12.1 billion hedge fund Moore Capital Management LP. The team includes seven portfolio managers and two analysts. It is the largest group of portfolio managers to move together from SAC following the closure of its U.K. office at the end of 2013. A spokesman for Moore confirmed the hires. [WSJ]
“Frankly, my dear, you should give a damn,” Louis Bacon said last night, paraphrasing from what he called his holy book, “Gone With the Wind.” The Raleigh, North Carolina-born hedge-fund manager, who looks a bit like Rhett Butler (especially the hair), exhorted guests to protect nature as he accepted the National Audubon Society’s Audubon Medal…Five women costumed as North American birds circulated during cocktail hour. They wore bras and undies, a feather here and there, and body paint (they’d spent six hours standing during their transformation). Each ably identified herself (which most guests — including Jonathan Rosen, author of a book about birding — failed at). There was a red-breasted robin, a Blackburnian warbler, a loon, a blue jay and a calliope hummingbird. “Mrs. Bacon and I thought of it,” said Ann Colley, the executive director of the Moore Charitable Foundation, which has carried out much of Bacon’s conservation work. “We didn’t want it to be boring.” [Bloomberg]
Shortly after buying Trinchera Blanca ranch Bacon realized he had a serious problem and that in order to fix it he would have to do the previously unfathomable: become a public figure. His paradise was under siege, threatened by an invasive, man-made species–a proposed energy transmission line, which was to be held aloft by a series of 150-foot-tall metal towers. Seventeen miles of that line was to cut through the heart of the Blanca portion of the ranch and right in front of the trio of 14,000-foot peaks, the signature “viewshed” of the San Luis Valley. The project, a joint venture between Xcel Energy and Tri-State Generation & Transmission, was being sold to the public as a needed “green” line that would carry solar energy and was backed by a prominent environmental group in Boulder. It looked like a huge loss for Bacon…[A team he assembled] discovered that the energy companies had cheaper alternatives for existing lines, that Xcel had already met its renewable energy mandate with the state and that the line, which hadn’t even gone through an environmental impact study, would in fact most likely not even carry any “green” energy at all. “The more we looked into it, the more we felt like Erin Brockovich,” says Bacon, referring to the environmental sleuth immortalized by Julia Roberts in a 2000 movie…Feeling the heat, the energy companies fought back, painting Bacon as a Nimby (not in my backyard), a rich Easterner who wanted to dictate the energy needs of Colorado. (“Poor little rich boy,” the Pueblo Chieftain called him in an editorial.)…“What’s wrong with Nimbyism?” Bacon asks. “The entire environmental movement was built on it. Some of the greatest environmentalists were Nimbys. Thoreau protected Walden, right?” [Forbes, earlier]
One thing you may or may not know about hedge fund manager Louis Bacon is that he likes to keep his human interactions to a minimum. It’s not a personal thing, just people in general thing. He doesn’t like ‘em and he doesn’t want to talk to or look at ‘em. For example, rather than taking five minutes to tell a subordinate he disagrees with a trade idea, Bacon has been known instead to “retreat to his office and place an opposing trade, a tactic known as ‘fading’ a colleague.” Clients are treated similarly (“During meetings with…investors, Bacon, who often draws the blinds in his private office, frequently turns to his lieutenants to answer questions, often sitting silently through presentations”) and if you thought that being, say, the fruit of his loins meant special treatment, you were sorely mistaken (“One longtime assistant negotiates annual spending allowances with the elder of his children individually…Once they’ve agreed on the number, the assistant invites the child for a sit-down meeting with his or her father, during which Bacon usually signs off on the terms”). So it probably did not come as much of a surprise when LB hired his brother, the improbably named Zack Hampton Bacon III, to speak with a dozen or so members of the staff re: security waiting to escort them out of the building. Read more »