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GLG Partners appoints new managers to take up emerging markets challenge

Alternative asset manager GLG Partners has confirmed reports that Goldman Sachs partner Driss Ben-Brahim will be joining the firm to develop a special situations platform that will include its existing USD1.2bn emerging markets special situations business.

The firm has also announced the recruitment of Karim Abdel-Motaal and Bart Turtelboom from Morgan Stanley as co-heads of GLG's Emerging Markets Fund, Emerging Currency and Fixed Income Fund and Emerging Equity Fund. Ben-Brahim will join the firm in September, Abdel-Motaal and Bart Turtelboom in October.

Ben-Brahim will also develop a global macro platform and a series of thematic funds tailored to fit the specific strategic needs of sovereign wealth funds. The series of appointments follows the decision in April of star manager Greg Coffey, the firm's emerging markets specialist, to quit GLG later this year to launch his own business.

At Goldman Sachs Ben-Brahim was a partner responsible for various trading businesses, including the global macro proprietary trading group and options and complex derivatives trading. Since 2006, he has run Goldman's emerging markets trading business in London as well as an emerging markets principal investments business. He earlier worked for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

'Driss brings to GLG a unique combination of technical, investment and cross-asset class trading experience,' says co-chief executive Manny Roman. 'He is an innovator who has always been at the cutting edge of financial markets.

'His successful experience in developing an emerging markets trading and principal investment business for Goldman Sachs gives him a unique perspective on both global macro-economic themes and special opportunities.'

GLG's other co-chief executive, Noam Gottesman, adds: 'Driss has exceptional investing and structuring abilities with high-level global relationships that have been developed over the 15 years he has spent at Goldman Sachs, and these will complement and add great value to our firm. Our new markets franchise, including the Middle East, will be a clear beneficiary of his appointment, and he will be a key driver of GLG's new strategic development efforts.'

At Morgan Stanley Abdel-Motaal and Turtelboom were global co-heads of emerging markets sales and trading, managing one of the most successful emerging markets businesses in the industry, including substantial proprietary capital, invested across the full range of emerging markets securities and regions.

Abdel-Motaal previously worked as a trader at Tudor Capital, where he managed one of the emerging markets trading books, and at JP Morgan, where he was global head of emerging local markets research for five years. He was also responsible for building JP Morgan's local currency research effort and developing a suite of models and indices that have become benchmarks for the asset class.

Turtelboom joined Morgan Stanley in 2004 from Vega Asset Management, where he was an emerging markets portfolio manager. Previously he was a director at Deutsche Bank in London, responsible for covering large clients in emerging markets, having earlier been an economist at the International Monetary Fund in Washington.

'Karim's and Bart's track record, industry presence and emerging markets knowledge will provide dedicated leadership to three of our emerging markets funds,' Roman says. 'We look forward to the significant contribution they will make to GLG's emerging markets franchise.'

Launched in 1995, GLG aims to focus on preserving clients' capital and achieving consistent, superior absolute returns with low volatility and low correlation to equity and fixed income markets. At the end of March the firm managed assets exceeding USD24bn.

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