Investec Asset Management is to move its two pan-European funds in-house and end BlackRock's contract on the portfolios. James Hand takes over as lead manager on the £11m funds.
BlackRock will retain the contract to manage the group's larger Continental Europe fund for the foreseeable future.
David Aird, managing director of Investec, said the move does not indicate the group would terminate its relationship with BlackRock manager Albert Morillo.
While Aird acknowledged Morillo has suffered poor performance in recent years, he said this has improved over the past six months.
"In our view BlackRock has always had the edge on the Continental fund. We have moved the pan-European portfolios in-house so the global equities team can build up a track record for managing pan-European equities," he said.
Hand moved to the group in 2000 from Schroders where he was a smaller companies manager. His appointment is expected to signal a change of approach for the fund, which had a larger-cap bias under Morillo. Hand will be assisted in managing the fund by Beverly Thomson and the global equities team.
The onshore Investec Pan European Equity fund has returned -5.8% bid to bid over the three years to 20 June 2005, against a Europe including UK average of 12%.
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