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Awards Methodology

Following a public call for nominations, the editorial staff of Institutional Investor magazine selects award nominees based on how strongly candidates, both those put forward via the call for nominations, and those independently identified by the editorial staff, meet the criteria for their respective categories. Once the nominees are publicly announced, the magazine group then conducts a wide survey of U.S. institutional investors and invites them to vote for the manager nominees. Hedge fund managers are also invited to vote for the investor nominees. Institutional Investor's editorial staff analyzes the results of the voting to determine the winners, who are announced at the annual awards dinner and ceremony, this year being held at the Mandarin Oriental in NYC.


Hedge Fund Investment Award Categories

Qualified nominees should be public plans, corporate pensions, endowments, foundations, family offices or sovereign wealth fund that have demonstrated excellence in absolute return investing during the past year. Although 2013 investment returns are very important to the ultimate selection, consideration will also be given to investors' long-term performance and overall ability to construct and manage a hedge fund portfolio.

Large Public Plan of the Year ($15 billion or more in assets)
Small Public Plan of the Year (Less then $15 billion in assets)
Corporate Plan of the Year
Large Foundation or Endowment of the Year ($3 billion or more)
Small Foundation or Endowment of the Year (Less then $3 billion)
Healthcare System of the Year
Family Office of the Year
Sovereign Wealth Fund of the Year

Hedge Fund Consultant of the Year
Qualified nominees should be consultants that have helped craft robust hedge fund investment programs for institutional investors, provided shrewd advice, especially in a down market, and demonstrated their ability to explain complex hedge fund strategies to investment boards.

Outsourced CIO of the Year
Qualified nominees should be investment officers that, on an outsourced basis, have helped craft robust hedge fund investment programs for one or more institutional investor clients, provided shrewd advice and demonstrated their ability to work with and explain complex hedge fund strategies to investment boards.


Hedge Fund Management Award Categories

Institutional Hedge Fund Firm of the Year
Qualified nominees should be hedge fund firms with an institutional quality investment platform. Consideration will be given to overall firm performance, size and type of assets under management, senior management, reputation, innovation, firm culture, infrastructure, risk management, investor relations and contribution to the hedge fund industry.

Emerging Hedge Fund Firm of the Year
Qualified nominees should be hedge fund firms that have been in existence for no more than five years as of January 1, 2012013, and have been recognized by their peers as being an outstanding investment management firm. Consideration will be given to overall firm performance, assets under management, team track record, firm culture, operational infrastructure, risk management and investor relations.

Large Fund of Hedge Funds Firm of the Year
Qualified nominees should be funds-of-funds firms with $3 billion or more in assets under management as of January 1, 2015. Consideration will be given to performance, innovation, reputation, due diligence, risk management, firm culture and the proven ability of the firm to provide overall value in constructing hedge fund portfolios for clients.

Small Fund of Hedge Funds Firm of the Year
Qualified nominees should be funds-of-funds firms with less than $3 billion in assets under management as of January 1, 2015. Consideration will be given to performance, innovation, reputation, due diligence, risk management, firm culture and the proven ability of the firm to provide overall value in constructing hedge fund portfolios for clients.

Early Stage Hedge Fund Investor of the Year
Qualified nominees should be firms that provide hedge fund managers with seed or first day capital. Consideration will be given to the structure of the seeding platform, or investment approach, the ability to help and support fund managers, portfolio construction and manager selection as well as the quality of the underlying firms.

Equity-Focused Hedge Fund of the Year
Qualified nominees should be hedge funds whose strategy relies primarily on equity investments. Fund strategies that qualify in this category include but are not limited to fundamental long-short equity, activist investing, short selling and emerging markets equity. Although strong consideration will be given to 2013 investment returns, performance is not the sole determinant for selection. Other criteria include risk management, investment discipline and selection, portfolio management, performance track record, stability of investment team, investor relations and back-office infrastructure.

Credit-Focused Hedge Fund of the Year
Qualified nominees should be hedge funds whose strategy relies primarily on credit investments. Fund strategies that qualify in this category include but are not limited to distressed debt, asset-based lending, emerging markets debt and long-short credit. Although strong consideration will be given to 2013 investment returns, performance is not the sole determinant for selection. Other criteria include risk management, investment discipline and selection, portfolio management, performance track record, stability of investment team, investor relations and back-office infrastructure.

Multistrategy Hedge Fund of the Year
Qualified nominees should be multistrategy hedge funds. Although strong consideration will be given to 2013 investment returns, performance is not the sole determinant for selection. Other criteria include risk management, investment discipline and selection, portfolio management, performance track record, stability of investment team, investor relations and back-office infrastructure.

Relative Value Hedge Fund of the Year
Qualified nominees should be hedge funds whose strategy relies primarily on relative value investments. Fund strategies that qualify in this category include but are not limited to merger arbitrage, statistical arbitrage, convertible arbitrage and event-driven. Although strong consideration will be given to 2013 investment returns, performance is not the sole determinant for selection. Other criteria include risk management, investment discipline and selection, portfolio management, performance track record, stability of investment team, investor relations and back-office infrastructure.

Event-Driven Hedge Fund Firm of the Year
Qualified nominees should be hedge funds whose strategy relies primarily on event-driven investments. Fund strategies that qualify in this category include but are not limited to event-driven investments. Although strong consideration will be given to 2013 investment returns, performance is not the sole determinant for selection. Other criteria include risk management, investment discipline and selection, portfolio management, performance track record, stability of investment team, investor relations and back-office infrastructure.

Hybrid Hedge Fund Firm Of The Year
Qualified nominees should be firms whose strategy relies primarily on a hedge fund/private equity hybrid investing model. Funds in this category likely will have longer lockups with a focus on illiquid assets and a blend of private equity and hedge fund investment fees. Fund strategies that qualify in this category include but are not limited to distressed debt and asset-based lending. Although strong consideration will be given to 2011 investment returns, performance is not the sole determinant for selection. Other criteria include risk management, investment discipline and selection, portfolio management, performance track record, stability of investment team, investor relations and back-office infrastructure

Macro-Focused Hedge Fund of the Year, Systematic
Qualified nominees should be hedge funds whose strategy relies primarily on systematic global macro investments. Funds that qualify in this category include but are not limited to Commodity Trading Advisors, systematic trend followers and managed futures. Although strong consideration will be given to 2013 investment returns, performance is not the sole determinant for selection. Other criteria include risk management, investment discipline and selection, portfolio management, performance track record, stability of investment team, investor relations and back-office infrastructure.

Macro-Focused Hedge Fund of the Year, Discretionary
Qualified nominees should be hedge funds whose strategy relies primarily on discretionary global macro investments. Funds that qualify in this category include but are not limited to fundamentally driven discretionary traders. Although strong consideration will be given to 2013 investment returns, performance is not the sole determinant for selection. Other criteria include risk management, investment discipline and selection, portfolio management, performance track record, stability of investment team, investor relations and back-office infrastructure.


Honorees

Outstanding Contribution Award
The Outstanding Contribution Award recognizes an individual for his or her recent significant contributions to hedge fund management and investing. The honoree will have displayed the highest professional and ethical standards and helped raise the standard for hedge fund managers and investors.

Hedge Fund Industry Leader, Lifetime
The Hedge Fund Industry Leader Award recognizes an individual whose career has had a profound and positive impact on the hedge fund management industry. The honoree will be someone recognized for his or her intellectual leadership and personal dedication to maintaining the highest professional and ethical standards of the hedge fund industry.


Hedge Fund Rising Stars
Qualified candidates should be individuals who are playing an increasingly significant role in the hedge fund industry, either for a manager, an investor or a brokerage firm or other service provider. Consideration will be given to nominees who have demonstrated a proven ability to deliver in their field, have received recognition by their firms, have demonstrated entrepreneurship, are highly regarded by their peers and have made a broader contribution to the hedge fund industry.