John C. Pernell, Jr., President and Chief Investment Officer, is an investment and financial services veteran, whose experience and success in hedge funds, traditional assets, and real estate inspired the creation of Polaris and the Polaris group of companies. As one of the earlier entrants in the hedge fund industry, Pernell ranks among some of the most seasoned professional investors in this market niche. He started and was the Managing Director of the Collective Trust Division of Furman Selz in 1987 — a joint venture with Chase Manhattan Bank. This Trust was one of the first series of multi-manager, bank-trusteed
ERISA funds incorporating
hedge funds — the forerunner of
one of Polaris’ unique investment
In 1990, Pernell and Hamilton founded Polaris Investment Partners, Inc. in New York City, relocating the firm to Charleston, SC in 1994. Pernell’s 27 years of experience has been focused on investment manager selection where he is well-known and respected by his peers. Over the years at Polaris, he has invested with industry icons like Julian H. Robertson, Jr., founder of Tiger Management, and he continues to invest with many of the industry’s most widely respected managers such as Moore Capital Management, Elliott Management, and Otter Creek. Equally, if not more impressive, Pernell’s due diligence led him to pass on convicted Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff, reject Samuel Israel of Bayou due to his fund structure, and terminated contractually with Michael Lauer of Lancer Capital after a very brief period.