Billionaire George Soros bought shares of several companies in the aftermath of the Archegos meltdown, according to reports. Bloomberg reported that George Soror's investment firm, Soros Fund Management, bough shares of ViacomCBS Inc, Discovery Inc and Baidu Inc as these stocks were on fire sale after Archegos Capital Management collapsed.
Soros bought shares worth $194 million of ViacomCBS and Baidu stock valued at $77 million, the report said. The fund management firm also bought $46 million worth of Vipshop Holdings Ltd shares and $34 million of Tencent Music Entertainment Group's shares. The purchase were in first quarter.
The report was based on regulatory filing released on Friday. The report adds that Soros did not own these shares before the Archegos liquidation.
The crisis at Archegos unfolded in late March when it engaged in the fire sale of about $20 billion of assets after it defaulted on a margin call by Credit Suisse and others.
With the value of securities in the margin account of Archegos dropping substantially due to bets that failed, the fund was forced to sell assets in a fire sale, which then created a wave of panic that resembled the Lehman Brothers crisis in 2008. The fire sale saw assets worth about $20 billion, mainly US and Chinese stocks, being sold.
Major investment banks like Deutsche Bank, UBS, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs etc were hit by the liquidation of Archegos but they avoided or limited the losses by cutting the exposure to Archegos assets in time.
What is Archegos?
The family-owned hedge fund was founded by former equity analyst Bill Hwang, who started his Wall Street career in the 1990s. After having worked with hedge fund manager Julian Robertson's Tiger Management, he then launched his own fund Tiger Asia Management in the early 2000s. In 2012 he renamed Tiger Asia as Archegos Capital and made it a family office. The fund went on to become of the largest investors in Asian financial markets.