Wall Street Journal – Jeffrey Vinik’s Tampa Bay Lightning are struggling, but the performance of his National Hockey League team isn’t the only worry for the veteran stock-picker. Investors have asked to pull around $1.5 billion from his hedge-fund firm after a period of poor performance, according to people briefed on the matter.
The withdrawal requests amount to around 18% of the roughly $8 billion that was run by Vinik Asset Management.
The redemption requests have come as Mr. Vinik, who rose to fame in the 1990s as the manager of Fidelity Investments’ Magellan fund, has added a new investment team and moved from Boston to Tampa to be closer to the Lightning, the franchise he owns. The moves have raised concerns in some quarters that Mr. Vinik, 54 years old, may have become less focused on investing, according to people familiar with the firm.
Vinik Offshore Fund, which bets on and against stocks, gained just 0.3% from July last year through February, according to a March investor presentation viewed by The Wall Street Journal. By contrast, hedge funds following similar “long-short” strategies gained 9.1% on average over the same period as the markets rallied, according to the research firm HFR.