(pictured: Jack Inglis and Paul Chadwick)
The annual AIMA Australia Forum, to be held tomorrow (Tuesday) at the Sofitel Wentworth Sydney, and the Hedge Funds Rock and Australian Hedge Fund Awards dinner, at Sydney’s Ivy Ballroom this Thursday, both look like setting attendance records.
The AIMA Forum is expected to break last year’s record of 300 attendees while Hedge Funds Rock/Hedge Funds Awards is likely to do the same at more than 400.
The two events are separate but have close historical ties through common committee members, directors and founding participants. They attract a lot of people from around the region and the world who go to both events, making for a week of meetings, networking and a little fun for the hedge fund sector.
Two of this year’s AIMA Forum keynote speakers are high-profile American hedge fund managers Cliff Asness, co-founder and CIO of AQR Capital, and Jane Buchan, CEO of PAAMCO.
Also this Thursday in Sydney is the Conexus Financial absolute returns fund conference, which was formerly held in Melbourne.
Paul Chadwick, AIMA Australia chair, said the theme of this year’s Forum was “deliverability”, which would be addressed by several speakers. The theme encompassed many areas, such as fees and charges and sustainability of management strategies, including compliance and backoffice efficiency. Chadwick will be interviewing Asness in a fireside chat-style discussion at the Forum.
The topical issue of diversity among both managers and investor funds will also be addressed by Buchan and others.
Chadwick has overseen a big step-up for AIMA Australia in the past three years, first taking the organisation of the annual Forum inhouse and then employing an experienced general manager, Michael Gallagher, to run day-to-day operations. AIMA has put more effort into its education and communications program – subsequently building on its membership base – as well as providing members with additional materials to aid their development. Jack Inglis, the London-based global chief executive of AIMA, will address the Sydney Forum again this year on the state of the industry worldwide.
The Hedge Fund Awards, coinciding with Hedge Funds Rock on Thursday, have 11 categories: Australian Hedge Fund of the Year; Best Emerging Manager; Best Long/Short Equity Fund; Best Market Neutral Fund; Best Global Macro/Futures Fund; Best Multi Strategy Fund; Best Investor supporting Australian Managers; Best Offshore Manager operating in Australia; Contribution to the Australian Hedge Fund Industry; Best Fixed Income and Credit Fund; and, on a lighter note, the “Hedgie”, for best film clip (each finalist is charged with making a short video to present on the evening).