Atom Investors’ equity portfolio shrinks 40% in first quarter
The equity portfolio of Atom Investors, the multi-manager platform launched by Novus Partners founder Basil Qunibi in 2018, declined by around 40% in the first quarter. Novus Partners provides data and analysis to hedge funds and institutional investors.
The Austin-based company reported $ 598 million of publicly traded U.S. stocks as of March 31, up from $ 990 million at the end of the year, according to its 13F file with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
At the end of the year, Atom’s regulatory assets – which include short positions – under management stood at nearly $ 2.6 billion, the company revealed in its ADV 2021 filing.
“The reported decline in assets was related to the transition from our directly implemented investment fund to separately managed accounts” in the first quarter, said COO John Cunningham. Institutional investor.
Atom is known for investing with long-short managers and short-biased funds.
Short positions are not disclosed in quarterly 13F hedge fund statements unless they are implemented using listed put options. But as shorts lost money on the memes-fueled rise of a number of stocks, including GameStop, most long-short hedge funds have been sobered up, meaning they have also sold their long positions.
Atom partners with short seller Andrew left on research
Atom also has a research relationship with Andrew Left’s Citron Capital, but the company is not an investor in his hedge fund, according to Left.
“They are good guys,” Left said. II. “By that I mean they don’t trade around me.”
Last year, Citron’s hedge fund reported net gains of 155%, largely based on the fund’s stake in Amazon.
The first part of this year, however, was not great for Left, who decided to throw in the towel on activist short-selling after he and his family became targets of members of the Wallstreetbets subreddit for. calling GameStop short. Wallstreetbets is a trading discussion group that gained notoriety when its members played a major role in GameStop’s short squeeze earlier this year.
“It was brutal,” Left said, adding that his hedge fund lost about 18% in the quarter.
Since the GameStop trade crash, Left has taken a bullish stance on several small, obscure stocks that appeared in Atom’s latest 13F.
Among them are LifeMD, which has been the target of short sellers, as well as several other names of Left in Atom’s portfolio, including Root, an insurance technology company, and XL Fleet, which focuses on electrification of fleet vehicles.
Other Left picks in the portfolio include Lizhi, an online audio entertainment platform, Esports Entertainment Group, and Jumia Technologies.
Atom uses a quantitative approach to selecting managers, based in part on software developed at Novus Partners, where many of its employees previously worked. Atom is also a Novus customer.
One of Atom’s main backers is Future Fund, the Australian sovereign wealth fund, which lists Atom as one of its “alternative risk premium” investments.
Novus and Atom are separate companies but report to the same holding company, according to a person knowledgeable about the transaction.