Millennium swoops for senior staff from commodities hedge fund

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Millennium Capital Partners, the expansionary hedge fund, has never been slow to capitalise on an opportunity to bring in new talent, hiring from investment banks’ prop trading desks over the past 12 months. Now, it’s brought in two partners from what appears to be the latest casualty of the beleaguered commodity hedge fund sector.

George Hudson, founding partner and chief investment officer of IKEN Capital, joined Millennium earlier this month, according to the FCA register, along with James Brueton, a former Deloitte consultant who was chief operating officer at the hedge fund.

All five employees of IKEN Capital, including former Deutsche Bank and SocGen trader Christophe De La Celle and Simon Shorland, an ex-managing director in JPMorgan’s rates sales team, are no longer with the firm, according to the FCA register. The firm’s website is down and attempts to contact IKEN were unsuccessful.

However, the new hires at Millennium suggest that the hedge fund has taken another opportunity to hire some experienced prop traders who have fallen on harder times. IKEN bucked the trend of poor performance among commodity hedge funds after its ‘soft’ launch in June 2012, returning 7% to January 2013 when other commodity funds were floundering.

Clive Capital, one of the world’s largest commodity hedge funds, closed in September, while Higgs Capital announced its intention to wind-down at the end of last year.

IKEN’s founding partners, Brueton, Hudson and De La Celle all worked together at prop trading firm Schneider Trading, which was taken over by Marex Spectron in May 2012.

Millennium Capital has increased its UK headcount by nearly 40% over the past year, hiring portfolio managers from failed start-ups, other large competitors and taking advantage of the fallout from large investment banks’ prop trading teams, particularly at UBS.