Exclusive: Third Point founder Daniel Loeb takes over as Munib Islam leaves firmExclusive: Third Point founder Daniel Loeb takes over as Munib Islam leaves firm
FILE PHOTO: Loeb, founder of Third Point LLC, participates in a panel discussion during the Skybridge Alternatives Conference in Las Vegas

By Svea Herbst-Bayliss

BOSTON (Reuters) – Billionaire investor Daniel Loeb is taking back the reins as sole chief investment officer at his hedge fund Third Point LLC, less than one year after he appointed long-time colleague Munib Islam to be his co-chief investment officer, according to a letter the firm sent its investors.

Loeb, who is about to celebrate his 25th anniversary at Third Point, told investors about his decision in a letter on Tuesday.

Islam will be leaving the firm and will continue to advise it in a consulting capacity until the end of the year.

Third Point has built a reputation as an influential activist shareholder by pushing for changes at companies such as Sony, Prudential Plc <PRU.L> and Campbell Soup Co <CPB.N> in the last few years, the letter said.

Like many hedge funds Third Point lost money in the first quarter and has seen assets decline to roughly $14 billion (11.4 billion pounds) this year. In an earlier letter to investors, Loeb said that Third Point had not adequately prepared for a possible full-blown pandemic and was caught flat-footed when the world was essentially shut down to blunt the virus’ spread.

Its heavy bets on stocks, especially in the aerospace, airline and auto-related sectors, hurt performance which was down 16% at one portfolio in the first three months of 2020, according to an earlier letter.

(Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss in Boston; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)