Hedge Fund Pioneer Jack Nash Dead

Former chairman of Oppenheimer was 79

Jack Nash, the refugee from Nazi Germany who helped change the mutual fund industry in his career at Oppenheimer & Co., then started the hedge fund business with partner Leon Levy by founding Odyssey Partners, the first hedge fund, in 1982, died July 30 in New York at the age of 79.

Nash joined Oppenheimer in 1951, became its president in 1974, its chairman in 1979, and sold the company in 1982, using some of the proceeds to start Odyssey. He also helped found The New York Sun newspaper, was a specialist in leveraged buyouts, and famously helped finance John DeLorean's car company. According to his New York Times obituary, Odyssey grew to assets of $3.3 billion prior to closing in 1997, and returned an annual average of 22.4% to its investors in its 14-year existence.

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