You could call it dueling Web sites. HedgeFund.net, founded in 1997 by Tuna Capital Ltd., Locust Valley, N.Y., to provide detailed information on hedge funds for investors, is now contending with the recently opened HedgeWorld.com.
The HedgeFund.net database includes information on 1,000 hedge funds and tracks 30 hedge fund strategies. More than 5,000 registered investors are using the site.
HedgeWorld.com boasts of providing access to the TASS+ database, which includes information on 2,200 hedge funds and 1,700 hedge fund managers.
HedgeFund.net founder Alex Shogren said all of his information is free, while HedgeWorld.com charges for individual fund reports. He also claimed HedgeWorld.com has some funds that don't want to be listed on the site and some are upset.
That is "completely false," said Gregory Barrett, executive vice president of HedgeWorld USA Inc., Rye, N.Y.
"We sent a letter to every (hedge) fund in the Tass and Tremont databases requesting permission to list them and asked who wanted to be excluded," he said.
Mr. Shogren asserted only "accredited investors" are allowed to use his site -- investors who have filled out a form approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission and then had the information verified. Mr. Barrett said, "We feel strongly, based on feedback, that we are within the bounds of the precedent set by the SEC," which has said it is OK to post hedge fund information on the Web, so long as a screening process exists. He said HedgeWorld.com does screen, but allows customers access to the site before the process is completed. He also claimed HedgeFund.net "has no way of proving (their investors are sophisticated) by just asking questions on the phone." Despite their differences, Mr. Shogren said, "I think the more information that's out there on hedge funds, the better."