Yesterday we threw up a post on York Capital detailing some insider squabbling and rather colorful chaos.
According to an tipster inside York and two sources extremely familiar with goings-on there, office morale at York's NYC HQ was hovering between not great and full-blown riot yesterday after staffers learned that the head of York's London office, Christophe Aurand, had declared he was leaving in a potential major blow to York's European operations.
This morning, we found ourselves in possession of a letter sent out last night to York's investors in response to our story (you can find a .pdf of it at the bottom of this post). The letter is - in our estimation - a rare example of a firm being boldly transparent to their investors about concerns aroused in the media. Perhaps the only thing that is not addressed in the letter from our post is whether or not Jamie Dinan has found a complimentary wing player for the Milwaukee Bucks at the NBA draft combine.
The letter is not signed by any individual at York but by the firm as a whole. While it states unequivocally that Aurand still works at York, it does not attempt to obfuscate the reality that his tenure there is not exactly rock-solid:
In recent months, we have been engaged with Christophe Aurand in discussions regarding his long-term role at the Firm. Presently, Christophe, head of York’s London office, is still with the Firm. The discussions with him have been both constructive and challenging, and are ongoing.
We admittedly don't get a ton of these letters sent our way but the ones we do see rarely lack this type of no-bullshit clarity. Even Bridgewater tends to get artfully obtuse when communicating what went down in their latest senior executive purge.
The letter goes on to say that York is disappointed that the news leaked out to "certain members of the media" which is eerie wording considering that's the exact wording loved ones use to describe their relationships with Dealbreaker personnel.
But on top of the bracing honesty and the premium shade, what really impressed us about York's letter are the numbers they shared with investors:
Year-to-date, and on a rolling 12-month basis, the Firm’s net performance across all of its hedge fund strategies has been strong. To that end, year-to-date through April and on rolling 12-month basis, the York Multi-Strategy Fund is up 10.2% and 18.4%, respectively; the York Select Fund is up 14.9% and 31.1%, respectively; the York Credit Opportunities Fund is up 4.3% and 13.2%, respectively; the York Global Credit Income Fund is up 4.0% and 15.8%, respectively; the York European Opportunities Fund is up 8.6% and 11.8%, respectively; the York European Focus Fund is up 10.1% and 17.4%, respectively; and the York Asian Opportunities Fund is up 6.8% and 16.0%, respectively.
Not too shabby and an apparent major bounce back from what York experienced throughout 2016.
So unless Christophe Aurand is responsible for all of that trading, we feel like York staffers throwing down in the office should take a deep breath, step back, look around and just take a moment to thank the heavens that they don't work at Pershing Square Capital.