September 19, 2017 / 5:56 PM / in a month

Hedge fund manager shuts firm to explore run for Connecticut governor

NEW YORK (Reuters) - David Stemerman is winding down his hedge fund firm to explore a run for governor of Connecticut, according to a letter sent to clients of Conatus Capital Management LP on Tuesday.

FILE PHOTO: David Stemerman, founder of Conatus Capital Management, speaks at the Sohn Investment Conference in New York, May 8, 2013. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

“Connecticut – home to my family and business – is in crisis,” Stemerman wrote in the note, which was viewed by Reuters.

“I am deeply concerned that a small number of people in our state are thriving while many are struggling to make ends meet,” the Greenwich-based Republican added. “I do not claim to have all of the answers, but as an outsider with a fresh perspective, I believe that I can bring a different approach.”

The next election for governor in Connecticut is in November 2018.

The news was previously reported by Bloomberg News.

Conatus started in 2008 with about $2.3 billion in assets under management and followed a classic fundamental stock selection strategy. The firm grew to manage about $3 billion by the start of 2014 but assets dropped to about $1.6 billion today, according to a person familiar with the situation.

Conatus’ main hedge fund gained more than 18 percent this year through August, the person said. Its average annual gain since inception was about 5.4 percent, according to Bloomberg.

Stemerman also said in the letter that he planned to give startup money to a new fund planned by Conatus consumer industry head Amir Mokari.

Reporting by Lawrence Delevingne; Editing by Jonathan Oatis

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