NEW YORK, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- February 7, 2007 -- Didac Artés, CEO of the Próxima Alfa Investments joint venture (Próxima) between BBVA, the large Spanish bank, and Vega Asset Management (Vega), today announced that Robert F. Slutz , one of the founders of Vega, is retiring as the Chief Executive Officer of Próxima Alfa Investments (USA) LLC. Michael B. Mann, also a senior partner at Vega, will be Chief Executive Officer on an interim basis until a permanent hire is made. Próxima was formed in 2006 as a platform of single manager hedge funds and funds of funds.

"Robert has been an instrumental part of the creation and development of Próxima. We appreciate the time and dedication he has given to the organization to ensure that the firm would thrive," said Didac Artés, CEO of Próxima. "We continue to be optimistic about the global market for single manager hedge funds and funds of funds as well as the future growth of Próxima."

"I enjoyed being a part of the team that is building Próxima," said Robert F. Slutz. "Now that Próxima is on its way to becoming a fully integrated organization, I can begin to pursue other professional opportunities."

Mr. Artés has been the CEO of Próxima since it was formed in November 2006 and has been working in the financial markets for more than 25 years. He has experience at well-known institutions such as Chase Manhattan Bank (in NY), Bankers Trust Company (in London), Banco Santander and BBVA, where he held several positions starting as an FX Dealer at Chase to Treasurer of Santander and afterwards of BBVA.

Próxima will have nine managers, based in London, Madrid and New York, and 12 funds with strategies ranging from volatility relative value to emerging markets, including a commodities fund. Próxima is approved by the regulator as a funds management company under the laws of Spain and is currently seeking the necessary approvals from U.K. and U.S. regulators in order to fully integrate the platform.

Contact Information: Contact: Steve Lipin or Melissa Daly Brunswick Group 212-333-3810