Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Investment king quits after 25 years to go solo

FUND manager Neil Woodford is to end his 25-year career with Invesco Perpetual.

FUND manager Neil Woodford is to end his 25-year career with Invesco Perpetual.

The 52-year-old, who manages the UK’s largest collection of funds at £33billion, will leave the Henley company at the end of April after serving a six-month notice period.

Mr Woodford intends to start a new fund management company which he says will serve institutional and retail clients. He will remain responsible for all the funds for which he is sole manager until he leaves.

Mark Barnett, who has worked for the company for 17 years, will succeed Mr Woodford as head of UK equities. Ciaron Mallon, who joined eight years ago, has taken over the firm’s Monthly Income Plus and Distribution funds.

Mr Woodford said: “My decision to leave is a personal one based on my views about where I see long-term opportunities in the fund management industry.

“I leave the company on good terms and remain fully committed to my fund management responsibilities at Invesco Perpetual until my departure. I wish my colleagues all the best for the future.”

Mr Woodford, who lives in the Hambleden Valley with his fiancée Madeline White and their two children, was born in Cookham and graduated in economics and agricultural economics from the University of Exeter in 1981.

He began his investment career with the Dominion Insurance Company that year and in 1987 joined Eagle Star as a fund manager. He started at Invesco Perpetual a year later and went on to become Britain’s most celebrated fund manager due to his success.

His portfolio makes up the largest share of the £70billion worth of assets that the firm manages. He has large shares in BT, BP, BAE Systems and Centrica. This year, he was made a Commander of the British Empire for services to the economy in the Queen’s birthday honours.

Invesco Perpetual chief executive Mark Armour said: “It has been a privilege for us all to work alongside Neil and I understand that, after 25 years, he is ready for new challenges.

“Our overriding priority is to look after our clients’ interests through a well-ordered transition process.

“Invesco Perpetual has highly experienced, talented investment teams, market-leading capabilities and the resources of a global company. We will continue to focus on delivering good outcomes for our clients.”

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