Manager News – March 2017

Stewart Investors Asia Pacific:

Angus Tulloch has announced he will retire from Stewart Investors at the end of September 2017, after almost 30 years running their Asia Pacific fund. Succession planning had already been put in place from 1st July 2016 with the Stewart Investors Asia Pacific Leaders fund being handed to co-managers David Gait and Sashi Reddy, whilst the Asia Pacific fund has been co-managed by Ashish Swarup and Tulloch.  Although Tulloch’s imminent departure was widely known prior to this announcement, the exact date was uncertain.


Old Mutual Global Investors European team:

Kevin Lilley, the manager of Old Mutual Global Investors (OMGI) large-cap European equity portfolios, is leaving the group after a prolonged period of under-performance. Lilley joined the group in December 2011 from Royal London Asset Management, becoming the sole manager on OMGI’s European Equity ex UK and European Equity funds.  Ian Ormiston, who joined from Ignis in 2007, will now manage both funds, while Liam Nunn will also work as a manager on the former vehicle.  Prior to this appointment Nunn and Ormiston worked together on the Old Mutual Europe (ex UK) Smaller Companies fund and will continue to do so going forward.


Aberdeen Frontier Markets:

Devan Kaloo and Joanne Irvine have been appointed lead managers of the Aberdeen Frontier Markets investment trust. Currently the portfolio is managed via a “fund of funds” approach, but the appointment of Kaloo and Irvine marks a shift in strategy to direct investments.


Aberdeen Multi-Asset:

Fiona Gillespie has stepped down from the Aberdeen Multi-Asset fund after joining the group through its acquisition of Edinburgh Fund Managers in 2003. Heather McKay, Senior Portfolio Manager, will take over management of the fund alongside co-manager Mike Turner.


Threadneedle UK Select Trust PLC:

The Threadneedle UK Select Trust PLC is to be merged into the Henderson High Income Trust PLC in June 2017, due to concerns about the small size of the Threadneedle trust, making it uneconomical to continue. Under the terms of the merger, the Threadneedle trust will be reconstructed and wound up, with shareholder given the option to receive either cash or move into the Henderson trust.


Keystone PLC:

The board of the Keystone investment trust have announced that Mark Barnett will be stepping down from the portfolio on the 1st April 2017, with fellow Invesco Perpetual manager, James Goldstone, taking charge.  This manager change will coincide with a 25% decrease in the annual fee that Keystone pay to Invesco; from 0.60% to 0.45%, with the terms of the performance fee unaffected.


Wise Investments:

Next month Tony Yarrow will be joined as co-manager of the Wise Income and Wise Investment funds by Vincent Ropers, who has joined the group from Standard Life Investments. Ropers was a member of the Standard Life multi-asset and tactical allocation team which helped run the Absolute Return Government Bond fund.


 JO Hambro UK Opportunities:

John Wood is set to retire from JO Hambro Capital Management later this year, with his £1.8 billion UK Opportunities fund being handed over to Rachel Reutter and Michael Ulrich. Reutter has worked on the fund since 2012, while Ulrich joined the team in 2015.  The UK Opportunities fund was soft-closed in October 2013, but re-opened in January 2016 as the felt the defensive characteristics of the fund would serve cautious clients well in a volatile market environment.


Old Mutual Fixed Income:

Christine Johnson, head of fixed income at Old Mutual Global Investors has left the company following a restructure of the team. The firm had already started restructuring and expanding its fixed income team back in 2015 following the appointment of John Peta as head of emerging market debt.  Shortly after Tim Barker was promoted to head of credit and Mark Nash was appointed as Head of Global Bonds in June 2016.

Johnson had already taken a step back from fund management, handing over the Corporate Bond fund to Lloyd Harris in December 2015, and the Global Strategic Bond fund to Nash and Nicholas Wall in August 2016. She remained co-manager on the £110.6 million Monthly Income High Yield Bond fund and the £135.1 million Monthly Income Bond fund. The High Yield Bond fund will continue to be managed by Bastian Wagner, with Barker assuming the co-manager role.  Barker will also take over management of the Monthly Income Bond fund.


Premier Optimum Income:

Premier Asset Management has hired Geoff Kirk from Schroders as co-manager of the its Optimum Income fund; as current manager Chris Wright steps back from the portfolio. Wright has managed the Optimum Income fund since 2008 and will remain at the firm as manager of the Premier Ethical fund.  Kirk spent ten years at Schroders, where he was part of the structured fund management team which was responsible for the Schroders Income Maximiser fund range.