Founder & Chairman
Irv Kessler is a founding partner and Chairman of Walleye. Irv is also the founding member and Chief Investment Officer of Provident Advisors LLC, which is a registered investment adviser that provides discretionary management services to private funds. Prior to co-founding Walleye in 2005, he was CEO and CIO of Deephaven Capital Management, a multi-strategy hedge fund he co-founded in 1994. Irv founded and co-founded several other companies in the past. In 1995, he co-founded Arbitrade, a global market maker in exchange traded derivatives. When Arbitrade and Deephaven were sold to Knight Trading Group in 2000, Irv joined Knight’s executive oversight committee. He also co-founded Kessler-Asher Group in 1986, a firm that offered clearing, training, and financial backing to professional traders. The firm was sold to Spear, Leeds & Kellogg in 1998. He also founded Provident Real Estate Advisors to invest in distressed real estate. PREA began purchasing and managing single family homes for rent in 2009. These portfolios morphed into a public REIT, Silver Bay Realty Trust Corp. (NYSE: SBY), of which Irv was one of the founders and served as Chairman of the Board of Directors until SBY’s sale for $1.3B to another public company in 2017. He began his career as a floor trader in 1978, trading and making markets in equity and index options, treasuries, foreign exchange and grains on the CBOE, CBOT, and CME until 1990. Irv was elected to the Board of Directors of the CBOE and Cincinnati Stock Exchange in 1988.
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