Bernheim adds Baml as prime broker and predicts increase in M&A

French hedge fund manager Bernheim, Dreyfus & Co has named Bank of America Merrill Lynch (Baml) as an additional prime broker for its event-driven Diva Synergy and Diva Synergy Ucits funds, using the announcement to also predict an uptick in M&A deals.

Bernheim’s Diva Synergy team revealed it was “very bullish for 2012 and expects M&A activity to pick up steadily”.

Expectations for growing M&A activity have been circling for several weeks. Speaking to HFMWeek earlier this month, David Simon, founder, chief executive and managing member, of $300m New York-based hedge fund firm Twin Capital Management said he believes the second half of the year will be “huge” for transactions.

“People in Europe do not expect the continent to grow over the next three to five years, which means there is likely going to be a number of European firms coming over to the US to make acquisitions,” he added.

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David Simon, Twin Capital Management CEO predicts surge in M&A activity | Hedge Fund Manager

David Simon, Twin Capital Management CEO predicts surge in M&A activity | Hedge Fund Manager

Speaking to HFMWeek, David Simon, Twin Capital founder, chief executive and managing member, singled out healthcare as a sector likely to see more consolidation than most. Firms focused on natural resources, such as liquid gas, were also going to be highly active, he added.

David Simon, CEO of Twin Capital Management: how Europe and China are impacting the markets.

The economic uncertainty in the markets has been squarely focused on Greece and the potential fallout for the rest of Europe. The potential financial collapse of Europe has diminished, but they still face several problems without any near term solutions. It seems like the markets have already priced in concerns for the problems facing Europe, but may not fully reflect the more significant impact of a slow-down in Chinese growth.

The Chinese government said it will target economic growth of 7.5% this year the lowest level since 2004. China had its largest trade deficit since 1989 last month as Europe’s sovereign-debt turmoil hampered exports and imports. Furthermore, as the Chinese economy grows their advantage as a low cost producer is slowly eroding and their citizens will start to demand more benefits and become more environmentally conscious. This drives up costs and makes China less competitive in world markets. This coupled with their biggest trading partner, Europe, in a recession leads to slower growth in China and thus slower world growth. An Increasingly important trading partner of developed and emerging markets China’s export and consumption trends could have serious ramifications on the rest of the world

Kevin Gahwyler’s New Role at Twin Capital

Twin Capital Management LLC, a New York-based event-driven hedge fund firm, has appointed Kevin S. Gahwyler, CFA as chief operating officer. Mr. Gahwyler, who previously served as director of business development, will continue to report directly to Twin Capital’s CEO and founder David Simon. Mr. Gahwyler will be responsible for day-to-day operations, as well as setting the firm’s overall strategy and direction. He will continue to manage business development and investor relations.

Prior to joining Twin Capital, Mr. Gahwyler was the founder of KenCole Capital, an investment bank boutique specializing in hedge fund structures and marketing. Mr. Gahwyler also served in several senior marketing roles – most recently as a product specialist for Pequot Capital Management Inc. and as the director of marketing for Sagamore Hill Capital Management L.P.

Mr. Gahwyler graduated from Fairfield University with a B.S. in Biological Sciences and from Thunderbird School of Global Management with a Masters in International Management.