Let’s, if we may, review Crispin Odey’s performance over the past few years. His flagship Odey European Fund has posted double-digit returns in each of the last six years; unfortunately, only one of those times has it been positive. (By contrast, his underlings are doing a bang-up job: one of James Hanbury’s funds rose 46.2% last year, and Adrian Courtenay’s was up 42.8%, proving, alongside the likes of Alan Howard, that it can be done, just, like, not by Crispin Odey.) Assets under management have fallen by $10 billion. In order to make those few investors it has left whole, he’ll have to more than triple their remaining money. Instead, he’s decided to embarrass and insult them (“I realize that for many of my investors the current performance of the fund is inexcusable,” he wrote them back in November, begging the question, for whom is the performance excusable) to the point that all involved agree it’d be better to pretend he’s not in charge, maybe to the point of renaming the place. Oh, and his pet political project (and his buddies putting it into practice) has been a disaster.
How does one reward such a man? Why, by nearly quadrupling his bonus for a year in which he more than tripled the amount of money he lost investors, to a figure considerably higher than the whole of the firm’s performance fee income.
Performance fees raked in by Odey Asset Management slumped to just £0.9million in the year ending April 5, 2020…. But directors still approved a dividend of £1.1million, up from £300,000 paid the year before.
The year before, it should be noted included the bulk of Odey’s only good year in the last half-dozen, when his fund returned 53%. Of course, at that time, Odey didn’t have any legal expenses related to his alleged groping of a woman, so you can understand why he’d be eager for a bit of a raise. Why Odey investors would continue to agree to pay it is another matter.
Hedge fund boss Crispin Odey helps himself to a £1.1m dividend despite tumbling profits [This is Money]
Odey’s Slump Deepens as His Hedge Fund Loses Another 30.5% [Bloomberg]
Brevan Howard Hedge Funds Gain Up to 99% in Best-Ever Year [Bloomberg]
A Week Into Full Brexit, the Pain for U.K. Businesses Has Arrived [NYT]