Jacob Gottlieb who was forced to liquidate Visium Asset Management after it was hit by an insider-trading scandal plans to return and invest in health-care stocks. He founded Visium Asset Management LP in 2005 and during the company’s best operation years, it managed assets valued at 8 billion dollars. The company’s flagship healthcare hedge fund was Visium Balanced Fund that recorded an annual return of about 14.3 percent for a period starting April 2001 to the end of 2015 according to a report by The Wall Street Journal. During this time, Mr. Gottlieb used separate accounts to manage the company’s assets although the fund recorded a 9.3% decline from January to May of 2016 according to another report.
Visium Asset Management LP saw its doors close in early 2016 but it seems that its founder is not yet done with investing in the health-care stocks. The issues that led to the closure of Visium became public after some of the company’s employees were charged with inflating the value of the firm’ assets although the company’s founder, Mr. Gottlieb, was found not culpable of any wrongdoing.
In an interview about investments, the 46-year-old Gottlieb revealed that he loves investing and that he has been involved in a wide range of investments since he was a teenager. He maintains that he expects to continue investing for the rest of his life. As an individual who is passionate about entrepreneurship, Mr. Gottlieb has already acquired a family office named Altium Capital that helps him with the management of his wealth. The office currently has six people working in it. Altium Capital, just like Jacob Gottlieb’s other company Visium Asset Management, focuses on investing in the healthcare industry and his brother acts as the firm’s chief operating officer.
- Jacob Gottlieb discloses that since Visium started closing down, he had not had much free time since he was focused on ensuring he liquidated the firm’s portfolios efficiently. His main aim was ensuring that he would be able to invest again in the healthcare stocks. The medical doctor turned investor thinks that it is the right time to mold another healthcare centered hedge fund. He believes that the developments in the past five years that have seen many firms go public are an indication that there is the possibility of value creation and destruction healthcare sector.
In 2016, Sanjay Valvani was taken to court and charged with trading on confidential government data related to generic-drug approvals. Mr. Valvani, who was a partner at Visium Balanced Fund, was later found lifeless in his home in what the police recorded as a suicide incidence. The company’s portfolio manager Mr. Stefan Lumiere was also charged with an attempt to mismark securities in the Visium Balanced Fund where he pleaded guilty to the charges. Mr. Lumiere was later fined $ 1 million on top of an 18 months imprisonment sentence and a 3 year supervised release. Mr. Lumiere’s predicaments did not end there as the Securities and Exchange Commission imposed a ban on him that prevents him from working in the securities industry.
The Securities Exchange Commission found the former chief financial officer at Visium, Steven Ku, guilty for failure to provide reasonable supervision. He agreed to a $100,000 fine and a ban from the securities industry for one year. Mr. Christopher Platford, who was a portfolio manager at Visium, also pleaded guilty to charges of mismarking.