Azabu Value Partners Launch Japan Equity Fund

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Tokyo financial industry veterans establish Japan-focused fundamental equity long/short strategy.

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Azabu Value Partners (Cayman) (“Azabu Value”) announced the launch of the Azabu Value Master Fund, a Japan-focused fundamental equity long/short strategy under the umbrella of Rogers Investment Advisors KK on December 5, 2016.

The Azabu Value Master Fund (“The Fund”) is managed by Mr. June-Yon Kim and Mr. Oleg Zuravljov, former Fidelity Japan colleagues with nearly four decades of combined experience in Japanese equities. Mr. Michael O’Flynn, Head of Business Development and a longtime financial markets veteran, serves as Managing Director of Azabu Value Partners (Cayman), the general partner of The Fund.

The Fund employs a fundamental bottom-up strategy, investing in Japanese larger capitalization stocks. The strategy is enhanced by a derivative overlay and seeks to deliver returns not correlated with the underlying market. The key differentiating feature of the strategy is its focus on identifying value opportunities in the context of Japan’s pronounced economic and equity market cyclicality.

Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are to serve as prime brokers of the Fund. Operations and risk management functions are provided by the Rogers Investment Advisors platform in Tokyo.

“We believe that our approach, focusing on fundamental bottom-up research enhanced by a top-down assessment of the macroeconomic and market cycles, allows us to take advantage of the significant dispersion of equity returns typical for Japan and to achieve consistent absolute returns regardless of the general direction of the Japanese equity market,” said Mr. Kim.

Mr. Zuravljov added, “Japan is probably the most cyclical developed market in the world. Fundamental stock pickers in Japan often ignore this powerful phenomenon. We believe that looking at individual stocks through the prism of macroeconomic cyclicality creates exceptional opportunities and reduces risk.”

“I think what we are trying to do at Azabu Value is unique,” said Mr. O’Flynn, who for many years served as a Tokyo-based institutional equity salesman to both Mr. Kim and Mr. Zuravljov. “Japan is a deep and liquid developed market with emerging market-like inefficiencies which, when combined with our team’s decades of stock-picking expertise, will offer investors more opportunities to obtain alpha on both the long and the short side, as compared to the far narrower nature of markets across the rest of Asia.”

Mr. Edward Rogers, Chief Executive Officer of Rogers Investment Advisors added, “We are pleased to help launch the Azabu Value Fund on the Rogers IA platform. For quite some time we have seen significant value added by equity long/short managers who base their research effort in Tokyo. Given the exceptional investment pedigrees of both June and Oleg we expect this fund to quickly distinguish itself with superior performance.”

Mr. June-Yon Kim, Portfolio Manager and Chief Investment Officer. June was a portfolio manager of FIL Investments (Japan) Limited (“FIL Japan”) from 2006 to 2015. In this role, he managed the Fidelity Active Strategy (FAST) Japan Fund, a UCITS alternative fund, and long-only funds. Prior to re-joining FIL Japan in 2006, June was a partner at Hachibushu Capital from 2003 to 2005. In this role, he co-managed the long/short fundamental equity portfolio of the Triloka Master Fund. From 1996 to 2003, he was a portfolio manager, research analyst and research intern with Fidelity Investments Japan. June obtained his MBA in Finance and Accounting from the University of Chicago in 1997 and his BA in Economics and Asian Studies from Cornell University in 1992.

Mr. Oleg Zuravljov, Portfolio Manager and Head of Research. Oleg was CEO of Shared Research Inc., a pioneering issuer-sponsored research firm he founded in February 2009. From 2003 to 2008, he was a portfolio manager and research analyst at Gartmore Investment Japan, where he managed the AlphaGen Pyxis Fund. From 1998 to 2002, Oleg was with Fidelity Investments Japan which he joined after obtaining his MBA from INSEAD in 1997.

Mr. Michael O’Flynn, Managing Director and Head of Business Development. Mike has been actively involved as a senior executive and private investor in Asia, Eastern Europe, and the United States over his 25-year career with Deutsche Bank, Lehman Brothers, and Moscow-based UFG Asset Management. He is a 1998 graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill’s Kenan-Flagler Business School and received his BA from Dartmouth College in 1991.

About Rogers Investment Advisors (“Rogers IA”)
Rogers Investment Advisors K.K. is an Asia-focused alternative investment asset management and advisory group established by Edward J. Rogers in 2006. It is regulated in Japan (license no. #1159) as a discretionary investment manager and investment advisory company. Rogers provides a best-in-class platform for emerging managers in Japan by providing a top tier support infrastructure including control, compliance and technology, thereby allowing managers to focus on executing their strategies. For more information about Rogers Investment Advisors, please visit http://www.rogersia.com.

About Azabu Value Partners (Cayman)
Azabu Value Partners (Cayman) (“Azabu Value”) is a newly established general partner of the Azabu Value Master Fund, a Japan-focused fundamental equity long/short strategy launched on December 5, 2016.

For more information about the Azabu Value Master Fund, please contact investor relations via info(at)azabuvalue.com.

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