Millennium Management has hired a Credit Suisse director and food-sector investor as its new head of Asia operations.
Woon Young Jeong joined Izzy Englander’s hedge fund, which manages about $35.3bn in assets, earlier this month, based in Singapore. He was previously a director in prime solutions, electronic (quant prime) at Credit Suisse, according to his online profile.
Jeong’s hire is one of the first major sell-side-to-buy-side moves of 2018 in Singapore. Headhunters expect the hedge-fund job market to be buoyant in the Republic this year, following a strong 2017 performance by Asia-focused funds.
Funds investing in Asia returned 15.6% through November, compared to 5.7% in North America and 6.5% in Europe, according to data provider Eurekahedge. Meanwhile, several new hedge funds are launching in Asia this year. Kennie Atle Johansen, formerly a manager at Millennium, is setting up a quant fund in anticipation of increasing volatility in Asian stocks, reports Bloomberg.
Singapore’s pool of senior people already working at hedge funds is much smaller than Hong Kong’s, so raiding banks (in particular their prime solutions teams) is still common place.
New Millennium recruit Jeong now has a seat on the Asia Management Committee, which marks a comparatively rapid rise into a leadership-level buy-side job following a 10-year banking career. He started out at Lehman Brothers in Hong Kong in 2008. When the US firm went bankrupt a few month later, Jeong transferred to Nomura and worked there until 2012, latterly as an associate, in equity finance, prime services. Jeong then took a job in prime services flow trading at Credit Suisse in Hong Kong and moved to Singapore with the bank about a year later.
Jeong is a keen investor in local starts-ups, particularly in the food and beverage sector. Since 2016 he has been a board member and investor in Winetobe, a wine-focused e-commerce company, and XOLOGY, a sports-nutrition drink firm. Last year he invested in hydroponic vegetables business Sustenir Group.
Recent moves from banks to hedge funds in Asia include Wai Yip, co-head of Asia ex-Japan credit sales at Goldman Sachs, joining Canyon Partners in Hong Kong.
Millennium has been recruiting in London recently, taking on seven senior people since September, including from banks such as Citi and UBS.
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