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City of London to launch Asia Value & Growth

City of London Investment Group has recruited Sally Macdonald, who most recently worked at Dalton Strategic Partnership, and is to launch the Asia Value & Growth Fund for her on July 1.

The growth-oriented fund will focus on emerging Asia excluding Japan and will be part of the World Markets Umbrella fund, a Dublin-domiciled Oeic.

According to Simon Westlake, a development executive at City of London, the fund’s minimum investment will be £1,000 and fees 1.5% for retail investors.

Its main focus will be emerging Asian markets including India, China, Taiwan and South Korea, but it will also seek some exposure through investments in Singapore, Hong Kong and Australia, says Westlake.

“Emerging Asia is the only part of the world that is still growing … the only part that does not have long-term structural issues,” says Westlake. “Next year up to 7% GDP growth is forecast and there is a great deal of value in Asian equities.”

Macdonald will soon undertake a tour of Asia to establish sector priorities for the fund.

She has worked in fund management for over 20 years and most recently ran the Melchior Pan-Asian Advantage fund, launched in 2007.

The fund closed in January after a large institutional redemption left it with less than £100,000 under management, with Macdonald leaving Dalton as a result. However, Westlake says City of London is confident there will be no repeat of this scenario. “The fund closed when the world was in meltdown. We’re over that now … We will be distinguishing ourselves by superior investment performance.”

Before working at Dalton, Macdonald ran the Asian equity team at Morley Fund Management and worked at Canada Life and Lazard.

City of London says that it aims to market a fund similar to Asia Value & Growth to North American investors after two or three years.

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