CQS hires Citadel’s Chris Boas after failed hedge fund launch

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Chris Boas, the former global head of credit at Citadel’s securities unit who shelved plans to start his own hedge fund in June, has been hired by U.K. firm CQS.

Boas has taken the role as senior portfolio manager for credit strategies at CQS, the $12bn credit-focused hedge fund, according to new filings on the Financial Conduct Authority register. He quit Citadel last year, following a decision to wind down its securities unit in 2011 after a three-year effort to build an investment bank from scratch.

Boas had planned to launch Longwood Credit Partners in the first quarter of this year, a hedge fund that would have tried to profit from price differences in debt securities. However, in June these plans were cancelled. In a tough fund-raising environment, investors were unwilling to commit money to a hedge fund without a track record and the new fund was put on ice.

Ex-investment bankers starting their own hedge funds have struggled to raise funds. Sutesh Sharma, an ex-Citigroup prop trader who started Portman Square Capital couldn’t drum up the $500m it originally looked for from investors, for example.

Nonetheless, Boas has an impressive pedigree, having formerly worked as a managing director at Morgan Stanley leading the bank’s correlation trading division until 2006, before joining Citadel.

CQS, which was set up by Michael Hintze in 1999, has been expanding away from its traditional credit focus. In June it announced the launch of an equity long/short fund to be run by David Morant, a former portfolio manager at SAC Capital.

A spokesperson for CQS confirmed the appointment.

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