UK hedge fund defends itself from sexual assault claims
A British hedge fund defended itself Friday after the Financial Times published allegations of sexual assault by founder Crispin Odey, who denies the claims according to the newspaper.
Odey Asset Management (OAM) said in a statement that it has always treated “such allegations extremely seriously” and that it has robust procedures in place to ensure that the firm “complies with all of its legal and regulatory obligations”.
“Staff well-being is central to the culture of OAM’s business. We do not recognise the picture of the firm that has been painted by the Financial Times,” said the London-based hedge fund.
The FT on Thursday published claims from eight women alleging they had been sexually assaulted by Odey, a vocal Brexit supporter and Conservative party donor.
A further five women alleged they had been abused or harassed by Odey, the business daily said.
Odey, 64, well known for making huge sums from betting heavily against the British pound and UK government bonds in recent years, has described the allegations reported by the newspaper as “rubbish”.
Sources familiar with the matter told AFP on Thursday that JPMorgan Chase and Morgan Stanley were mulling cutting ties with the hedge fund after the assault claims.
Both US banks have declined to formally comment.
“We are aware of press coverage relating to actions allegedly being taken by prime brokers and other service providers to OAM,” the fund added in its statement emailed to AFP.
“While we cannot comment in detail, again for legal reasons, we are in active discussions with all service providers and we are confident that our service providers will continue to work with us to ensure that the interests of investors are protected.”
Established by Odey in 1991, OAM said it had “no concerns” about returns that have been generated by the firm for its clients and investors.
The FT probe focused on incidents said to have occurred between 1998 and 2021.
It cited 13 women who have worked for OAM or had social or professional dealings with its founder.
The investigation follows a British court ruling in 2021 that found Odey not guilty of sexual assault against a female banker.