Financial products and services outfit Matrix Group, has launched its first single strategy Hedge Fund, the Matrix RM Fund.

The Anglo European Long/Short Equity Fund, which has raised USD 16 million, will aim to generate absolute returns of at least 15% per annum (net of fees) and will be managed by Matrix Alternative Asset Management LLP (MAAM), the newly formed division of Matrix Group. It will focus on small and mid-cap companies, investing principally in the UK with an average investment allocation of 80% in the UK and 20% in Continental Europe.

'The fund's emphasis is on small and mid-cap companies, a less well researched area of the market which offers us an opportunity to add greater value,' says John Rosier, joint manager of the Matrix RM Fund. 'In this target market success or failure depends on the quality of management, the franchise and the financial position of the company. On the long side we prefer companies that have good franchises, strong sales growth and improving margins. Characteristically, short positions will be overvalued companies with deteriorating fundamentals.

'We feel that over the next year or so there will be plenty of exciting opportunities to make money on both sides of the book. The outlook for European equities in general remains attractive given a background of steady global growth, reasonable valuations and strong corporate liquidity, which is manifesting itself in corporate takeovers and mergers. There are however, risks to this rosy scenario, which will lead to periodic bouts of market nervousness. The fund will be positioned to take advantage of the opportunities presented.'

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