Invesco and JO Hambro tune European strategies

Invesco Perpetual has announced plans to merge two of its European funds, while JO Hambro Capital Management (JOHCM) has reopened its two European funds to new investments.

Invesco will merge Stephanie Gerrard’s £996m Invesco Perpetual European Growth fund into Jeff Taylor’s £727m European Equity fund on March 20, subject to shareholder approval.

The newly merged Invesco Perpetual European Equity fund will be managed by Taylor, head of European equities at the group. He has run the fund since January 2001.

Gerrard has run European Growth since July 2003 after joining from Aberdeen. However, according to Alistair Campbell, head of product development at Invesco, over the past few years the two funds have become closely aligned. As a result it has taken the decision to merge them.

Gerrard will remain at the group, where she will run the European component of its international funds.

The JOHCM Continental European and JOHCM European funds were closed in March last year after reaching their initial £500m capacity level. However, the two managers, Rod Marsden (Continental European) and Paul Wild (European), say the capacity can be increased to £1.2 billion.

According to JOHCM this decision follows rigorous back-testing and is an acknowledgement that the initial capacity limit was set too conservatively. As at January 31 the combined assets under management of the two portfolios was £606m, effectively meaning that the managers are happy for the funds to double in size.

However, the group says that Marsden is confident such a move will not impinge on the fund’s performance. The group concluded from its style research that both funds would still be top quartile over three and five years since launch if they had larger assets.