Investing

Billionaire investor Jeffrey Vinik closes hedge fund less than a year after its relaunch

Jeffrey Vinik

Victor J. Blue | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Jeffrey Vinik, the billionaire investor who relaunched his hedge fund earlier this year, is cutting his comeback tour short.

“It has been much harder to raise money over the last several months than I anticipated,” Vinik said in a letter dated Wednesday to investors. The Wall Street Journal first reported the news. CNBC later confirmed it.

“The climate for raising long-short equity hedge fund assets has been far more difficult than I expected, and performance of the VAM funds, while good … has not provided the necessary momentum to bring in our desired level of investments.”

Vinik Asset Management funds rose 4.8% on a net basis between March 1 and Sept. 30, the letter said. The funds will close by Nov. 15.

The fund manager, who made a name for himself running Fidelity’s Magellan fund before going out on his own, announced his comeback in mid-January. At the time, he told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” that “the fire in my belly still burns.”

But Vinik had a hard time raising money. Vinik Asset Management had more than $500 million in assets, according to the Journal, but Vinik hoped to raise between $2 billion and $3 billion. Vinik, who owns the Tampa Bay Lightning hockey team, told the Journal he needed to raise more money for the “economics” of the business to “make sense.”

The asset-management industry has been under pressure lately as the rise in passive investment vehicles such as exchanged-traded funds has pressured fees.

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