Co-founder Blochet exits hedge firm Brevan Howard

LONDON Tue Nov 17, 2009 5:12am EST

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LONDON (Reuters) - Jean-Philippe Blochet, one of the founding partners of Europe's biggest hedge fund firm Brevan Howard, has left the company after taking a sabbatical last year.

The 46-year-old, who previously worked with Brevan Howard co-founder Alan Howard at Credit Suisse, was part of Brevan Howard's macro team, focusing on currencies and interest rates.

The other co-founders of the high-profile firm, which ran $25.7 billion (15.2 billion pounds) in assets as at the end of September, were Christopher Rokos, James Vernon and Trifon Natsis.

"Following his return from sabbatical last year, Jean-Philippe Blochet has decided to cease to be an active member of Brevan Howard Asset Management LLP," the firm said in a statement. It declined further comment.

Brevan Howard's Master fund was one of the winners of the credit crisis with a return of more than 20 percent last year while the average fund lost around 19 percent.

In 2006 Blochet took part in the Marathon des Sables, a six-day, 150-mile hike across the Sahara where competitors carry almost all their own equipment and where water is rationed, according to the race's website.

Also leaving Brevan Howard is Stephane Diederich, who was hired from Credit Suisse in 2007 to set up an alternative CDO (collateralised debt obligation) business, an area of the financial world that was hit hard by the credit crisis.

Diederich more recently worked on setting up Brevan Howard's range of Ucits funds -- onshore vehicles that many hedge fund firms have launched to open up their products to a wider range of investors -- and is leaving to set up as an independent distributor of such funds, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Diederich stepped down as a member of the partnership at the end of last month, according to a regulatory filing.

Last week John Horseman, 51, regarded by peers as one of Britain's top stockpickers, announced he would step down from day-to-day management of his hedge funds at Horseman Capital Management although he will maintain an active role at the firm.

(To read the Reuters Hedge Fund Blog click on blogs.reuters.com/hedgehub; for the Global Investing Blog click here)

(Reporting by Laurence Fletcher; Editing by David Cowell)

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