Former equities portfolio manager Travis Kling has left billionaire Steven Cohen’s Point72 Asset Management to launch his own digital assets fund, Bloomberg reported September 21.
Point72 is an asset management firm founded in 2014 as the successor of investment company SAC Capital Advisors. The latter pleaded guilty to federal insider trading charges and paid a $1.8 billion fine. Point 72 has offices in New York City, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Singapore, London, Paris, and Palo Alto, while its staff is marked with former IBM executive Timothy Shaughnessy as chief operating officer.
The new Los Angeles-based fund called Ikigai will reportedly start on October 1 with partners’ capital, with plans to raise $15 million of outside capital on November 1. By mid-2019, Kling plans to increase Ikigai’s tokens portfolio to $100 million and its venture fund to $33 million.
At the time of launch, most of the funds will be in cash. The fund has a fee of two percent in addition to custody costs, while a minimum investment for accredited investors is $250,000.
Kling expressed confidence in cryptocurrencies, despite the current slump in markets, as interest in the space continues to grow. Kling said that “[cryptocurrency] will be a multi-trillion-dollar asset class,” adding:
“It will be part of our everyday lives. It’s still very early, but the development and growth of this technology will be exponential.”
In July, Cohen backed Arianna Simpson’s crypto and blockchain-focused hedge fund Autonomous Partners through his private equity firm Cohen Private Ventures. Simpson then said that her fund has held off from investing in Ripple (XRP) pending clarification from U.S. regulators as to whether XRP would be classified as a security.
In April, it was reported that 10 percent of crypto hedge funds could face closure in the subsequent eight months due to both market health and regulatory uncertainty. Kyle Samani, co-founder of U.S.-based fund Multicoin Capital, said that “new capital has slowed, even for a higher-profile fund like ours.”