After we apparently opened the door on some realpolitik going on inside York Capital Management last month, the fund assured investors that Dealbreaker is not #FakeNews while also mentioning something about how things were being sorted out on the personnel side and also York was crushing it lately.
Since then, things have gone quiet on the York Capital front and we have been left to wonder now and then if Christophe Aurand is still at the fund, if he plans to stay, what that would look like, and if he's happy...like really happy? But according to WSJ, we need wonder no more!
Jamie Dinan has named two successors to lead his hedge-fund firm York Capital Management in the future.
The nearly $17 billion firm named Bill Vrattos and Christophe Aurand its future leaders and promoted them to co-chief investment officers, effective July 1. They have respectively led York’s debt and European funds for years. Mr. Aurand also assumed more responsibility for York’s flagship multistrategy fund in 2016.
Aurand is not just sticking around, you guys, he's getting "Heir Apparent" embossed on his business cards and getting a futures share of the keys to Jamie Dinan's kingdom. It also seems that Aurand's loud attempt at revolt was quelled pretty quickly. Our post went up on May 10th, York responded to it on May 11th and according to WSJ, Aurand was anointed within a week:
“Bill and Christophe are outstanding long-term investors who have been instrumental to the Firm’s investment success,” Messrs. Dinan and Schwartz wrote in a letter to investors May 17. “We embrace them as core members of York’s senior leadership team and as our future successors in managing our firm.”
The letter said that despite the change at the top, portfolio management for York’s funds wouldn’t change.
One of Aurand's major beefs (aside from Dinan prioritizing the Milwaukee Bucks NBA draft opportunities over day-to-day management of York) is that his more conservative investment strategy doesn't always jive with the fund as a whole, so giving him more power would assumptively empower his thinking over others, meaning that portfolio management might change a little. And considering his results, that might not be a problem...
Mr. Aurand’s European Opportunities Fund was up was up 10% for the same period while Mr. Vrattos’s bond fund was up more than 5%, roughly on par with their benchmarks.
And in addition to his trading performance, Aurand has demonstrated a keen ability to master the art of career ascension within York. This latest tantrum was not his first and he has only grown more powerful with each threat to run away from home. Per a person familiar with goings on inside York, "Christophe is a master at doing this."
So it would seem.