HFA Asset Management (HFA AM) has won its first institutional mandate since making a decisive effort to target the sector in mid-2007.

The hedge fund-of-funds provider, which previously concentrated mainly on the retail market, has secured a $50 million commitment from the $2.9 billion Westpac Staff Superannuation Plan. The mandate will be invested in the HFA Diversified Investment Fund, which draws on approximately 50 underlying managers and covers up to 11 hedge fund strategies. The fund is advised by Lighthouse Partners, a $US8 billion alternatives manager which HFA finished acquiring on January 3. In total, HFA AM manages $265 million in institutional mandates. This “handful” has been picked up over the years as the firm concentrated on the retail market, from which it has drawn $4.1 billion, Robert White, HFA AM chief executive, said. Mid-way through 2007, the manager appointed Giuliano Sala Tenna as national wholesale manager, to market HFA funds to asset consultants and their clients. “It’s a time-consuming sector to work in, but we’re starting to see the fruits of the labour,” White said. “We see good growth opportunities in the institutional space.” Other institutional clients of HFA AM are Suncorp Life and Superannuation, which invested an $88.7 million mandate, and Vision Super, which committed $60 million.

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