Through Adrian Kemp, managing director (wealth management) at DPZ Capital, the company said “business interests were misaligned” as the reason for their departure, with Kemp adding that their business and growth visions differed with those of the company.
Along with deputy chief investment officer Rohit Ahluwalia, Watts and Donohoe left Royal Bank of Canada early last year to join DPZ Capital as executive director and principal respectively, to launch the company’s wealth management division.
At the same time, they were joined by Catherine Taylor as chief financial officer who left HSBC Global Asset Management to take up her new role.
Also from Royal Bank of Canada, Kemp joined in October last year as managing director (wealth management) and was immediately put in charge of a five-year development strategy. It is differences over this strategy that seems to be at the heart of why Donohoe and Watts have now left.
Watts’ role was on the due diligence side, interviewing fund managers while Donohoe was in charge of business development with the company looking to spread its client base into London using his extensive contacts.
Kemp said that, while it is “always sad when these things happen” DPZ Capital remains committed to producing good returns for its clients with excellent service.
He confirmed they will look to strengthen the team and replace Watts and Donohoe “when the time is right”. In the meantime, their roles and responsibilities will be shared between Kemp, Ahluwalia and chief executive Darren Zaman.
Look out for a full interview with Adrian Kemp and Rohit Ahluwalia in March’s issue of Portfolio Adviser that is published on 4 March.