Blackstone said to be in talks to back new distressed fund

Blackstone Group is in talks to back a Hong Kong-based distressed fund started by Jason Brown, a former global head of Goldman Sachs Group (GS) special situations group, said two people with knowledge of the matter.

Mr. Brown’s Arkkan Capital Management will focus on Asian opportunities with the flexibility to invest globally, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the information is private. It would be the second time Blackstone backs an Asia- based hedge fund since the 2008 global financial crisis.

Arkkan is seeking the support of the world’s largest manager of alternative investments to stocks and bonds to help it attract other big institutional investors. Blackstone’s backing of Hong Kong-based Senrigan Capital Group allowed it to grow assets to more than $1 billion in less than two years.

Peter Rose, a New York-based Blackstone spokesman, declined to comment.

New funds in Asia raised an average $20 million each in the first half, according to Singapore-based data provider Eurekahedge.

Mr. Brown ran Goldman Sachs’s global special situations group, which invests in distressed debt and companies using the bank’s own capital, between 2011 and his departure last year.

Arkkan received a license from Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission in December, according to information posted on the regulator’s website.

Blackstone in 2009 committed $150 million to Senrigan, a Hong Kong-based event-driven hedge fund manager headed by Nick Taylor, a former Citadel executive. A seeder typically provides startup capital to new hedge funds in exchange for an equity stake in the manager or a cut of its fee revenue.