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Galena Energy Hedge Fund Chief Lixi Said to Leave Company

Claude Lixi, the head of Galena Asset Management Ltd.’s energy hedge fund, left the London-based company, according to two people with direct knowledge of the departure.

The people didn’t say whether he resigned or was fired, and asked not to be identified because the information is private. Lixi, 40, who was based in Geneva, declined to comment when contacted yesterday on his mobile phone. Duncan Letchford, the company’s chief investment officer in London, didn’t return a message left with his secretary yesterday.

Jaakko Ahmala, a former executive at Galena’s parent company Trafigura Beheer BV, will take over Lixi’s role and work with portfolio manager Mark Heath, the people said. Ahmala joined Galena this month from Trafigura, where he was in charge of its derivatives group since 2010, according to a company website. Ahmala and Heath were hired by Trafigura in 2008.

Lixi joined Galena in May 2009 from Morgan Stanley, where he traded oil options.

Galena’s $218 million energy fund returned 4.3 percent in 2012, after a 1.2 percent gain in 2011, according to one of the people.

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