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IFAs&#39 loyalty in vain as Euro star Powe quits

Star European manager Rory Powe is under fire from disappointed IFAs after quitting Invesco Perpetual with his top-selling £2bn fund at a two-year low.

Many IFAs urged clients to stay loyal to Powe over the past 18 months – despite a period of poor performance by his European growth fund – in the hope that he would turn it around once European markets began to recover.

At the end of 2000, the fund had 288,612 unitholders, according to the UK Fund Industry Review.

Powe will leave at Christmas to run an independent hedge fund. He hands over Invesco Perpetual&#39s flagship fund to colleague Alistair Hibbert.

Powe will face IFAs at Invesco&#39s autumn roadshows next month where he will appear alongside Hibbert.

Powe has managed the European growth fund since 1991 and has been one of the best-performing fund managers of the past decade. The fund is ranked among the top quartile over fiveand 10-year periods. Last year, the fund was the UK&#39s top-selling unit trust, taking more than £1bn in the 12 months to January 2001.

However, after taking some heavy bets on technology at the start of 2000, Powe was caught out when TMT markets collapsed in March. Since then, the fund has plummeted to the bottom of its sector, down more than 60 per cent from its peak.

Invesco Perpetual chief executive Mike Webb says: “We are very sorry to see him go but we have got a very strong European team – it is not just Rory. As far as IFAs are concerned, they will be able to see Alistair and Rory jointly at the roadshows we are doing in October.”

Bates Investment head of research James Dalby says: “We are very disappointed. We felt it was down to him to get the fund back on track.”

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