July 17, 2019 / 6:31 PM / 4 months ago

UPDATE 1-Andrew Left's Citron Capital posted net return of 24.7% in 1st half of 2019

(Adds quotes from Citron letter, remarks on Beyond Meat)

By Jennifer Ablan

July 17 (Reuters) - Andrew Left’s Citron Capital posted a net return of 24.7% after fees and expenses in the first half of 2019, according to an investment letter posted on the fund’s website Wednesday, but said “it has been an extraordinarily challenging environment to be a short seller.”

Citron said in the letter that the firm was able to find opportunities in the initial public offering market betting against shares of Jumia Technologies AG and betting on disruptive business models such as Revolve Group.

Citron also made remarks on its stance in shares of Beyond Meat Inc, which Left in May said on Twitter he was shorting because valuations had become “Beyond Stupid.”

In Citron’s investment letter, the firm said: “While Citron can’t justify Beyond Meat’s (BYND) absurd valuation, we cannot ignore unfavorable technical dynamics (e.g., tight float and high borrow cost). We were able to capitalize on trading around our position in Beyond Meat, which was another top contributor to fund performance during 1H 2019.”

In May, Left said Citron believed Beyond Meat shares would go back to $65 a share. Beyond Meat shares are currently trading around $170 a share. (Reporting By Jennifer Ablan; Editing by Steve Orlofsky and Susan Thomas)

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