Scottish Widows Investment Partnership says it is confident its UK equities team will continue to deliver despite the shock exit of investment director David Urch.
The firm says its current managers plus new recruits such as James Clunie will ensure the loss of Urch, who has decided to leave to pursue “other industry opportunities”, is not felt as sharply as it might have otherwise been.
Since joining SWIP as investment director in December 2003, Urch has been a huge success having returned top quartile performance on the £90m SWIP UK opportunities and the £734m Scottish Widows UK select growth funds – both in the IMA UK All Companies sector - over the past three years.
Peter Cockburn is set to take over the two funds from Urch, who will continue working with the firm to ensure a “smooth transition”.
The group also confirms it will look to recruit a UK fund manager externally.
A spokesperson says: “It will be a smooth transition to ensure continuity. He (Urch) has decided to pursue other opportunities in the industry.
“We have got a really strong UK equity team which has been very successful. If you look at the stats we have produced excellent returns across our range of funds.”
Cockburn also runs the £2340m Scottish Widows UK growth and £54m SWIP UK advantage portfolios.
Urch joined SWIP back in 2003 having previously been a UK equity specialist at Martin Currie.
He started his career as a specialist at Merrill Lynch, which was then under its previous guise of Mercury Asset Management.
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