Blackstone Scales Back Asia-Focused Hedge Fund

(Reuters) – Blackstone Group LP (BX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) has cut the size of its planned Asia-focused hedge fund because the global financial crisis has led to redemptions, the Wall Street Journal said citing people familiar with the situation.

Blackstone, which manages private equity, real estate and hedge funds, would cut the fund size to about $200 million from a range of $500 million to $1 billion, the paper said.

New York-based Blackstone, about one-10th owned by China’s sovereign wealth fund, has scaled back its plans for the fund at a time when hedge funds around the world are facing redemption pressure, with some forced to shut down, the Journal said.

The Blackstone fund, renamed Blackstone A.M.N. Advisors from Blackstone Altius Advisors, will wrap up its first round of fund raising at $200 million, the paper said, citing one of the people familiar with the situation.

The “event-driven” Blackstone fund is headed by Aaron Nieman, who joined from S.A.C. Capital Management LLC earlier this year, the paper said.

An event-driven strategy involves taking significant positions in companies with “special situations,” involving distressed stocks, mergers, takeovers or other major news, according to the paper.

Blackstone Group could not be immediately reached for comments by Reuters. (Reporting by Sakthi Prasad in Bangalore )