John Griffin’s Blue Ridge Fund Closing

December 20, 2017 James Heinsman Hedge Fund News

Despite two decades of mostly positive results, John Griffin has decided to close down his Blue Ridge Capital hedge fund, worth about $6 billion. Griffin is just one more high-profile investors to throw in the towel due to the lackluster performances in recent years of hedge funds generally.

Griffin got his start as a protégé of the hedge fund icon Julian Robertson of Tiger Management, over thirty years ago. He began his career as an analyst for Robertson, rising in responsibility until he became the president of Tiger in 1993. He stayed in that position for three years until he left to from Blue Ridge with $55 million starter funds. Twenty years later Griffin’s fund was worth $9 billion at its peak. The past four years has hit the fund hard, driving Griffin’s decision to get out now.

The hedge fund industry has been under extraordinary pressure in recent years with less expensive-to-manage index funds performing considerably better than hedge funds. Many well-known and respected investors have experienced poor performance of their funds.

“This can be a humbling business and many times we were tested, especially on the short side,” Griffin wrote in his letter to his clients, which was seen by Reuters. He added that he is “proud of how we earned our returns” over the past twenty years, returning an average of 15.4 percent each year at a time when the S&P 500 only returned 8.6 percent annually.

Blue Ridge Capital, John Griffin, Julian Robertson, Tiger Management,

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