Former Point72 Equities Manager Set to Launch Crypto Hedge Fund

Omar Faridi
  • Travis Kling, (until recently) an equities manager at Point72 Asset Management, has left his job to launch a crypto hedge fund.
  • Kling expects "exponential growth" in the crypto industry as he believes digital currencies will become a part of our "everyday lives."

Travis Kling, a senior equities manager at Point72 Asset Management, an investment firm with over $12 billion of assets management, has reportedly left his job to launch a cryptocurrency hedge fund.

Previously known as SAC Capital Advisors, Point72 was established in 2014 after the former was dissolved when it was ordered to pay a $1.8 billion fine for insider trading. With registered offices in New York, Paris, Palo Alto (California), London, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Tokyo, Point72’s chief operating officer is Timothy Shaughnessy, a former senior executive at IBM.

"Multi-Trillion Dollar" Asset Class

Kling’s new Los Angeles-based crypto hedge fund is called Ikigai and will reportedly be launched on October 1st. According to Bloomberg, initial funding for Kling’s crypto initiative has already been secured (mostly cash) and the firm is planning to acquire an additional $15 million in capital through a funding round starting on November 1st.

Kling also aims to raise a total of $33 million for his digital asset hedge fund during the first half 2019, and build up a $100 million cryptoasset portfolio. In order to contribute to the Ikigai fund, accredited investors must invest a minimum of $250,000.

Commenting on his crypto plans, Kling predicted that cryptocurrencies will become a “multi-trillion dollar asset class.” This, despite the extended digital currency bear market and fears in the crypto community regarding the long-term stability of the nascent industry.

"Exponential Growth", "Part Of Daily Life"

Kalin believes cryptocurrencies will gradually become a “part of our everyday lives.” As most blockchain professionals have noted, he also thinks crypto-related technology is still in its early stages of development. However, he expects that it will experience “exponential growth” - a view shared by crypto exchange Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao.

As covered on CryptoGlobe, billionaire Steven Cohen, who owns Point72, made a sizable investment in Arianna Simpson’s venture capital fund, Autonomous Partners, through his Cohen Private Ventures.

Notably, Simpson had been planning to invest in Ripple's suite of financial products; however, due to regulatory uncertainty around XRP (whether or not it’s a security), her firm decided not to at this point.

In April, there were concerns that several important crypto hedge funds would have to shut down due to lack of capital or regulatory issues. In that month, Multicoin Capital CEO, Kyle Samani, told Bloomberg via email that “new capital has slowed, even for a higher-profile fund like ours.”