Henderson Global Investors has appointed Abbey National's head of North American equities Geoff Paton to its technology team, with global tech fund manager Paul Kleiser poised to announce his retirement.
Paton, who managed two tech funds for Abbey National Asset Managers, including a unit trust ranked third in its peer group over the three years to November 2003, will join the group in August.
He is expected to replace Kleiser, co-manager of Henderson's £325m global tech fund – the second-biggest in its sector – who the group admits is highly likely to retire after his 60th birthday in January.
Paton, who had been ANAM's North American desk chief since 1992, will work alongside Stuart O'Gorman, Kleiser's co-manager, on the global tech fund.
Henderson co-head of equities Richard Carlyle says the appointment is a clear indication of the group's commitment to the tech sector, which has consisted largely of small funds following its collapse in early 2000.
Henderson has previously sought to attract these assets by offering free Isa transfers into its flagship global fund.
A Henderson spokeswoman says: “Paul is coming up to retirement age and there is a high probability that he will retire but he has not made up his mind yet.”
BestInvest fund analyst James Calder says: “It would be no surprise if Kleiser were to leave but we would not even look at Paton because his performance over the long term has not been up to scratch.”