GLOBAL - Former Credit Suisse's fund of funds head Jim Vos has launched a new advisory firm to help institutional investors bypass fund of funds and invest directly into hedge funds.

The New York-based Aksia Research & Management, which has just begun operations, has "a roster of several institutional clients", according to media reports.

The new business will capitalise on the emerging trend among pension funds to move away from funds of funds and placing money directly into hedge funds, a spokesman told US-financial magazine Black Enterprise.

The firm wants to bring in a diversified platform of single hedge fund managers, specialising in event-driven and relative value strategies as well as long/short equity.

"There is a cost efficiency factor," the spokesman said, adding: "A fund of funds instead of a hedge fund will reduce a 10% gross return to 6% or less."

Furthermore, he said that direct investment into hedge funds offers more transparency for investors, who can also gain access to capacity in going direct.

Vos has nabbed several top Credit Suisse Hedge Fund Investment Group alumni which used to report to him at Credit Suisse, among which former head of Credit Suisse's equity long/short team Joe Larucci, who will do the same at Aksia.

Also Vos has nabbed Patrick Adelsbach, the former event-driven and fixed-income emerging markets head analyst at Credit Suisse.

The firm has said it is in the process of expanding into the Japanese market by opening an office in Tokyo.