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Liberty Ermitage has been appointed to run a Japanese long/short equity mandate for Sweden's Skandia Liv as part of its new Portable-Alpha strategy.


Liberty Ermitage will manage a USD 100 million Japanese Long/Short Equity Account that will gradually be funded during the autumn of 2004.


The appointment is the latest of many recent wins in the Nordic region for the USD 3.5 billion funds of hedge funds specialist.


The concept of Portable-Alpha is to separate the creation of out-performance - via active management (alpha) - from the market exposure (beta) in order to achieve higher returns in the overall portfolio.


Ian Cadby, CEO & CIO of Liberty Ermitage, said: "We are thrilled to have been selected to work with Skandia on their Portable-Alpha strategy.  From a portfolio efficiency perspective, it is a strategy, which makes eminent sense, and one which I believe many institutions will attempt to follow.  Japan and Europe are regions I believe can make most effective use of the strategy, as the structural evolution of these markets should continue to offer Long/Short hedge funds with the ability to produce high levels of alpha.  The institutional interest shown in Liberty Ermitage's Japanese and European product is a testimony to the experience of the team and longevity in successfully managing products in these regions."


Anders Bladh, CEO of Intervalor, Liberty Ermitage's representatives in the Nordic Region, said: "When we first started representing Liberty Ermitage in September 2001, we concentrated on marketing their low volatility, non-directional (arbitrage) products. Over time this has turned into a fantastic success, with a long series of mandates from Nordic institutions. The new mandate from Skandia constitutes a breakthrough for one of Liberty Ermitage's directional specialities - their Long/Short Hedge Fund of Funds. The investment is a milestone for Portable-Alpha investing in the Nordic region, and both Intervalor and Liberty Ermitage are absolutely thrilled to be part of it, particularly since we are convinced this concept will grow.


Liberty Ermitage stated: "The investment itself is probably one of the largest Long/Short deals ever in the region and one of the biggest mandates ever awarded for Japanese Long/Short."


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