Why is running a hedge fund like competitive surfing? Apparently, it’s a mixture of the length of your wave and how aggressive your moves are.
That is the opinion of Pedro de Noronha, one of the few who have done both for a living. Mr de Noronha, who left surfing for the world of financial services because he wanted more intellectual stimulation, says the kind of strategic thinking that stood him in good stead while on a board helps in managing Noster Capital, his hedge fund.
On surfing: “Although a lot of surfers were more talented than I, I guess I was smarter than them and played the rules better.”
On managing a hedge fund: “I don’t think I’m smarter than everyone else, I just have a lot of common sense and a long term view”.
Time has yet to tell how the common sense and long term view will work as an investment philosophy. His global value fund was launched in March last year, since when it has had a pretty rocky time – down 6 per cent in 2008, up some 18 per cent this year.
Because it’s almost all his own money – the fund has only just opened to new investors – Mr de Noronha can sit it out, waiting to be proved right.