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Jefferies execs to form fund placement shop

Jefferies managing directors Magnus Christensson and Mark Hallock will launch an independent placement firm, possibly under the name Helix, the name of the placement group Jefferies acquired in 2005.

Two Jefferies managing directors are spinning out of the firm to form an independent placement shop.

Head of Jefferies’ European fund placement group Magnus Christensson and managing director Mark Hallock will launch the new firm, which might take the name Helix after the placement firm Helix Associates Jefferies acquired in 2005. Christensson and Hallock left Jefferies on “very amicable” terms, a source told PEI, and the firm is being “very supportive” of the spinout.

“It’s a strategic decision at the top of the bank,” the source said. The new firm will take on clients of Jefferies’ fund placement division, the source added.

A spokesperson for Jefferies declined to comment. It's not clear if Jefferies is completely exiting the fund placement business.

The spinout comes just a few months after Jefferies lost the head of its fund placement division, Stephen Gray, who left before the end of the year to join venture firm VantagePoint Venture Partners, a VantagePoint executive confirmed.

Jefferies hired Christensson in February 2010 from rival placement agent Atlantic-Pacific Capital, which he joined in 2002.

Jefferies has been acting as placement agent for Swedish firm Valedo Partners’ second fund, which is nearing a final close on SEK2 billion (€223 million; $303 million), beating its SEK1.6 billion target.