Awards 2018

South African hedge funds have been under extreme pressure this year on a variety of fronts, with complicated markets chief amongst their concerns.

Yet even with a lot of volatility in month-to-month returns, many funds have made convincing gains so far.

For the first nine months of the year, South African hedge funds have added a median 4.7%, against a negative return from the JSE All Share Index, which was down 3.84% to end-September, and a 4.81% gain from the All Bond Index.

According to HedgeNews Africa data, event-driven and fixed income strategies have delivered the strongest median numbers to end-September, with each category adding more than 7%. Market-neutral and quantitative funds and multi-strategy mandates have each gained around 4%, while long/short equity has had a tougher time, yet outperformed the JSE All Share with a 1.38% gain to the end of September.

Long-only pan African funds have also faced headwinds, coming in with negative medians year to date after deep drawdowns in many emerging and frontier markets.

With October proving to be another exceptionally tough month for the markets, the league tables could well see a significant reshuffle as we head into the fourth quarter.

The first provisional nominations for the 2018 awards will be announced in next month’s online edition, based on 10 months of monthly returns.

Now in their 10th year, the Awards are based on an established quantitative methodology that gauges risk-adjusted returns, in keeping with one of the hedge fund hallmarks of seeking to minimise downside risks.

The awards, based on calendar-year performance, will go to funds with the highest return in their categories, provided their Sharpe ratios are within 25% of the top Sharpes among the nominees in each category. Exceptions are made in the case of categories that combine different strategy areas, where other quantitative criteria may need to be applied.

The Awards will be celebrated at a gala dinner at the Vineyard Hotel in Cape Town on February 21, 2019.

Awards Methodology

To qualify for a nomination, funds must average a minimum of $10 million, or R80 million, in assets under management in that strategy throughout the calendar year (in fund structures plus associated segregated mandates).

Exceptions are made in the new fund category, which allows for lower AUMs, and considers funds with a track record of 12-23 months (with the award based on calendar-year returns) and the longer-term awards, for which higher minimums apply.

Funds submitting their monthly returns to our database are automatically considered for the Awards. New funds can submit data to before the end of November.

Data used in deciding the awards will be independently examined by eComply Consultants to ensure consistency and accuracy.

Awards categories include:

•    Long/short equity
•    Market neutral and quantitative
•    Fixed income
•    Multi-strategy
•    Specialist strategies
•    Pan Africa
•    Fund of hedge funds
•    Three-year performance
•    Five-year performance
•    10-year performance
•    New fund of the year
•    Fund of the year


To book your table at the 2018 Awards please email

Alternatively, download the Awards table booking form here.

• Table of ten: R36,000 ex vat / US$3,000.

Tables are limited so book early to avoid disappointment.