YouGov goes cool on hedge fund launch

LONDON - YouGov, the pioneer of online market research, is delaying plans to launch a hedge fund because of the uncertain economic climate.

YouGov had been planning to launch the fund, which was to operate under the name YouGovAlpha, with the backing of Numis Corporation and Four Capital. The idea of the fund emerged out of research YouGov did for financial institutions.

The Times has reported that the fund could be delayed or restructured but no further details were available at the time of writing.

YouGov also revealed it would be incurring a one-of charge of £1.2m after a failed takeover, although it did not say which company was the target.

In a trading statement, it said that it had invested more quickly in people and infrastructure than it had expected. The result would be that operating profit would be in the region of £8.5m -- around £1.8m lower than expected.

Founded in 2000, YouGov uses the internet to collect data for market research and public consultation purposes.

It has a panel of over 200,000 people from all ages and regions of Britain. It successfully predicted the outcome of the London Mayoral Election earlier this year.

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