STA Fund Management (STAFM) has launched a London-based hedge fund incubation platform, offering managers a shorter path to launch, reduced capital requirements and savings on set-up and operating costs.


STAFM said managers that meet STAFM's due diligence requirements can be set up and trading within as little as four weeks, using an existing FSA-regulated entity.


The company stated: "While STAFM takes care of the operational, compliance and finance-related issues of running a hedge fund, potential investors will find many of their due diligence boxes ticked, and the fund manager will be able to concentrate on raising capital and managing the fund."


Shabir Chowdhary, Head of Sales & Marketing, STAFM, said: "The platform means we can provide the comprehensive infrastructure required by today's investor, in a flexible and cost-effective format, and with fewer assets under management than would otherwise be necessary."


In addition to offering regulatory safe harbour, the STAFM Hedge Fund Incubation Platform aims to provide new hedge fund managers with office space in the heart of the City of London, a full technology and hardware platform, proprietary trading platforms providing direct market access and telecommunications, recorded telephone lines, dealer boards and high-speed internet access.


Fund managers will be able to use the in-house execution capability provided by STA's network of dealers in a variety of instruments and on a number of equity and derivative exchanges.


The manager will plug directly into STAFM's platform of service providers, including prime brokers, lawyers and administrators, and will benefit from existing operational, accounting, business, administrative, compliance, risk management and IT support.


STAFM can also help create marketing materials, write press releases, prepare marketing road shows, and facilitate and follow up on investor meetings.


Patric de Gentile Williams, CEO of STAFM, said: "STAFM will provide such services without prospective managers losing control of their destiny or parting with a significant proportion of their revenue."


He added: "Although STAFM was established to assist start-ups, most of its services can be used by existing hedge funds looking to reduce the burden and cost of regulation, infrastructure and administration."


Background Note:  STAFM is part of the STA (Schneider Trading Associates) Group. STA was founded by Sonny Schneider in 1998 to provide trading access, administration and a regulatory framework to hedge funds, independent traders, small proprietary trading groups and independent brokerage operations. The group's main operating entity, STA Limited, is an FSA-authorised and regulated business, with more than two hundred associates, and is a major participant in the European listed derivatives and equities markets.


copyright hedgeweek 2003


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