Report: #1284564

Complaint Review: Spruce Point Capital

  • Submitted: Wed, February 03, 2016
  • Updated: Wed, February 03, 2016
  • Reported By: Unknown — LONDON Alabama United Kingdom
  • Spruce Point Capital
    1991 Broadway
    New York, New York

Spruce Point Capital Watch Out! New York New York

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Recently I worked as an analyst doing consulting work for a small hedge fund in NYC called Spruce Point Capital Management. Initially I was very excited to work with the principal, Ben Axler, who impressed me with his interviews on Hedgeye TV. There, I got the image of a man who was highly professional, polished, and an expert in his field.
When he took me on to help with a project, I was genuinely thrilled. I thought, not only will I be working with one of the most up-and-coming hedge fund managers, I’ll also be working with an activist short-seller who fights to expose the unstable or even corrupt companies that are throwing the market off balance.
Yet from the first few weeks working on the project, I witnessed some troubling behavior in the company. The first warning sign came when I tried to find a reliable lab that could analyze the content of a target company’s product composition. I approached Axler with my suggestions, but he insisted that we use one particular lab, even though he couldn’t explain its advantage. When I asked questions about it, I was met with evasive answers and annoyance. From phone conversations I overheard, it appeared as if he had a deal with this lab – there was clearly nothing independent about the testing they conducted.
In addition to the shady situation with a lab, there were other instances where I got the feeling that Spruce Point Capital was manipulating data in the reports for its own benefit. The bottom line was always about justifying a short position, the facts took a backseat unless they were serving the Spruce Point narrative of a failed company. If information emerged that didn’t fit neatly into the one-sided story, I was told to disregard it.
In short, I would recommend analysts who are accustomed to working with rigorously ethical companies (as I was until now) to stay away! You are not only contributing to an illegitimate business – you are risking your own reputation by associating with this hedge fund. Don’t believe the hype about these trendy new funds.
As for investors, all I can say is, the information you read about in Spruce Point Capital’s reports is so carefully filtered that it is practically meaningless.
This is the first time and last time I work for this sketchy business masquerading as a financial firm.

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