Top Diamondback trader bolts fund to join Tudor

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Larry Petrella, a partner with Diamondback Capital Partners, is leaving the $4 billion hedge fund for a top job with Tudor Investment Corp, said people familiar with the two funds.

Petrella will become director of U.S. equities for Tudor, a $11.5 billion Greenwich, Connecticut, hedge fund conglomerate led by Paul Tudor Jones.

Also joining Tudor’s stock trading team is Thomas Hayes, who most recently was a managing director with MissionPoint Capital Partners.

Petrella is the second high-profile departure at Diamondback in the past four months. In June, Chad Loweth, one of the 5-year-old fund’s three co-founders left the firm.

A Diamondback human resources employee declined to comment on the recent departures.

An employee at Diamondback’s offices in Stamford, Connecticut, said Petrella was not available. The trader did not respond to an email seeking comment.

Diamondback’s two other co-founders Larry Sapanski and Richard Schimel remain at the helm of the fund. Sapanski, Schimel and Loweth launched Diamondback after leaving Steve Cohen’s SAC Capital.

Petrella joined the three men in spring 2005, shortly after Diamondback opened for business.

At Diamondback, Petrella led the media and telecom investment group.

Petrella, 44, long has specialized in media stocks. A decade ago, he was a star analyst at Lehman Brothers before leaving for the hedge fund world. His first fund job was as a portfolio manager with Omega Advisors, run by longtime hedge fund manager Leon Cooperman.

A person familiar with Tudor said the hedge fund is in the process of bolstering its equities trading team and plans to add as many as eight people in the coming months.

Reported by Matthew Goldstein and Emily Chasan; Editing by Richard Chang