Crispin Odey’s hedge fund posted its best 12 months since 2007 last year after its Covid bets paid off in the wake of his departure to defend sexual assault claims.
Odey Asset Management, founded by the Brexit donor in 1991, ended 2021 with a gain of almost 54pc.
Mr Odey’s fund was up as much as 108pc between January and September before giving up half of those gains in the last quarter of the year, Bloomberg reported.
The annual return represents the fund’s best result since 2007 and comes after the hedge fund tycoon stepped down at the end of 2020 from his firm to focus on managing his own funds.
Odey’s flagship fund was boosted by investments in companies that performed well during the pandemic, including Oxford Nanopore, which provides Covid testing kits to the NHS and soared in one of the UK’s best market debuts.
The fund had its best month in February, while its worst came in October.
It also comes after a tumultuous period in Mr Odey’s private life during which he was acquitted of indecent assault charges last March.
The court case gripped the City and was full of lurid detail. Mr Odey himself admitted he was “ashamed” by his actions but insisted he merely propositioned the woman after they ate a Chinese takeaway at his marital home, denying claims that he “lunged” at her.
The allegation related to an encounter in 1998 in which a woman claimed Mr Odey put his hands on her breast and up her skirt before she “wrestled herself free and left”. The judge ultimately ruled in his favour.
Mr Odey, the former son-in-law of Rupert Murdoch, was also among the City financiers who backed Boris Johnson’s leadership campaign and has previously supported former Ukip leader Nigel Farage.
He made £220m on the night of the Brexit vote after betting that markets would fall.
Odey Asset Management declined to comment.