Artemis is to launch a European Growth fund having recruited Merrill Lynch's head of pan-European eq...
Artemis is to launch a European Growth fund having recruited Merrill Lynch's head of pan-European equity strategy Philip Wolstencroft to be its manager, writes Robert Stock.
Wolstencroft, who was responsible for advising UK and international institutions and private clients, intends to run a portfolio of around 50 stocks. He was last in fund management a decade ago and in the meantime has been a top-rated equity strategist at County NatWest and Merrills.
The fund, which is to be benchmarked against the FT World Index Europe ex-UK, will have a three week fixed price offer until the 5 March when it goes live.
Artemis is still seeking regulatory approval for the launch. It will have an initial charge of 5.25%, an annual management fee of 1.5% and offer 3% commission to IFAs but no renewal.
Wolstencroft said the portfolio will invest principally in western Europe and will follow the Artemis ethos.
He added: "You have a limited number of very strong ideas and you back those ideas. This is something Artemis has been very strong at in the UK and I will try to replicate that strong performance in Europe." Wolstencroft intends to run the portfolio with a process encompassing both the economic backdrop, including industry bull and bear themes, and bottom-up, fundamental stock analysis to find the stocks that are most sensitive to those themes and therefore offer the best growth potential.
The process, which is designed to be scaleable, will not be invested along geographic lines, a practice that Wolstencroft said is in sharp decline.
Five years ago, he said, 45% of fund managers in Europe picked their portfolios along country lines. That has fallen to around 5% and the number using sectors has gone from 25% to 75%.
Artemis CEO Mark Tyndall said: "Philip's appointment provides Artemis with the UK's leading pan-European equity strategist. This complements and enhances our existing UK equity expertise."
Jamie Campbell, managing director of Artemis, said Wolstencroft was rated the top pan-European analyst in the Greenwich survey in 1998, 1999 and 2000; in the Institutional Investor survey for 1997, 1998 and 1999.
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