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This week in Investment

Ben Whitmores departure from Schroders appears to be a fairly big loss for the fund house. Whitmore has managed the 281m Schroder recovery fund since August 2001 and has outperformed the market impressively over most of the period.

He is moving to Jupiter to take over its underperforming special situations fund from Paul Sheehan. As well as attempting to improve the performance of that fund, Whitmore is expected to play a key role in running institutional funds for the group. Sheehan stays with the group to continue to running the Prima Dona investment trust and institutional mandates.

Schroders have been quick to push out a statement about Whitmores replacements who are both experienced analysts at the group to reassure investors that the fund is in good hands.

The two in question are Nick Kirrage and Kevin Murphy, who have six and four years analytical experience at Schroders respectively, the former as a UK analyst and the latter as a panEuropean.

Rather in the style of Fidelity, where Anthony Bolton picked his successor Jorma Korhonen to take on the global portion of the special sits fund, Schroders say that Whitmore and Schroder income fund manager Nick Purves have picked out the two because they believe them to have the skill sets to succeed on the fund.

The early consensus among IFAs seems to be positive on the new co-managers, although all seem to be in agreement that Whitmore will be hard to replace on the fund.

It is not difficult to see why. Since Whitmore took on the fund in August 2001 he has outperformed the UK All Share market by 83 per cent compared to the sector average of 31 per cent, placing him 10th out of 215 funds.

It has also been a busy few days for Baring Asset Management with two key appointments to its European and global equities desks, and the announcement of its intention to convert their multi-manager funds to Ucits III.

Matthias Siller is joining from the groups Europe Middle East and Africa (EMEA) equities team after nine years of experience in buying and selling, most recently with Austrian investment management company Raiffeeisen Capital Management.

James Syme has been bought in as head of the global emerging markets equity team and will be responsible for the Baring global emerging markets fund as BAM continues to beef up its equities presence.

So much for the quiet summer- the fund manager merry-go-round continues apace.
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