Brazil's Peninsula Forming New Distressed Asset Fund As Bankruptcies Surge

Brazilian asset management firm Peninsula Investimentos is launching a distressed-asset fund.

Backed by Credit Suisse Group, the fund is expected to be around R$500 million, or approximately $155 million. The company has brought on five new staff members for the effort, according to media reports quoting CEO Antonio Quintella, and will begin raising the fund among domestic as well as foreign investors during the second half of the year.

Brazil’s economic downturn is through to be generating opportunities for distressed investing within the country’s highly leveraged corporate sector, which saw a 34% surge in bankruptcy filings in the 12 months through February 2015.

Economists predict Brazil will return to recession in 2015, weighed down by the strong U.S. dollar and low energy and commodity prices. Peninsula will concentrate on distressed assets across a number of Brazilian industries, including construction and consumer products and those with high levels of dollar-denominated debt.

Credit Suisse holds a minority, non-voting stake in the company, according to Bloomberg. The Swiss bank helped Quintella, who led the Americas for Credit Suisse, form Peninsula in 2012.

The firm now employs more than 40 people and has approximately $775 million in assets under management deployed primarily in a liquid-instrument hedge fund.

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