Ex-Macquarie CEO emerges at Anchorage Capital

Allan Moss will advise the Sydney-based special situations private equity firm.

Allan Moss, the former managing director and chief executive of Australian financial services giant Macquarie Group, has joined Sydney-based Anchorage Capital Partners as a special advisor to its investment committee.

Anchorage Capital did not reply for requests for comment at press time.

Moss, a 31-year Macquarie veteran, was the group’s chief executive officer from 1993 until his retirement in May 2008. Currently, he is a principal at Allan Moss Investments, a private investment company.

During his tenure as CEO, Macquarie saw a thirty-fold jump in profits and a nine-fold increase in staff strength. However, the firm, which is the world’s largest infrastructure asset manager, has not fared well during the financial crisis, reporting nearly A$1.5 billion of write downs to its equity investments in May 2009. For the 2009 fiscal year it posted a profit of A$871 million, a fall of 52 percent from the previous year.

Anchorage Capital spun out from boutique investment firm Interbank Capital Partners in 2007. Three of the firm's four partners, Philip Cave, Michael Briggs and Daniel Wong, came from Interbank Capital, which was founded by Philip Cave. The remaining Anchorage partner, Mark Bayliss, was a former chief financial officer of John Fairfax, an Australian publishing group.

Presently, Anchorage is investing out of its debut fund, which held an A$100 million first close in August. The firm intends to hold a final close on A$200 million in the next six months, Bayliss told sister news site PEI Asia in September. Up to 30 percent of the capital raised will be invested in Southeast Asia and up to 70 percent will go to Australia and New Zealand.

The firm invests in special situations. Bayliss said that investments will be made in previous strong performers struggling presently, in “orphans” of large parent companies, and more generally in companies that are well established but underperforming due to mismanagement.

Its previous investments include two Brisbane-based food manufacturers Golden Circle and Hans Continental, the New Zealand operations of fast food chain Burger King and steel plate maker Bisalloy Steel Group.