Gravis poaches from Neptune sales team

Robin Geffen-led fund group has seen a wave of departures

Another member of Neptune’s team has jumped ship after a short stint as the firm reels from a series of key departures.

Sales manager Cameron Gardner (pictured) has left the business after just seven months to join a subsidiary of infrastructure investor Gravis Capital Management.

At Neptune she was responsible for covering the South West, Midlands and Wales.

‘We don’t hear much from them’

Darius McDermott managing director of Chelsea Financial Services said Gravis is a business that is “on the up for sure”.

Gravis invests chiefly in long-term government-backed infrastructure projects like hospitals, schools and energy generation, an area which has enjoyed a boost in popularity as investors hunt for income alternatives in a low-yield environment. It currently manages around £2.5bn across five funds, including the £357m Gravis UK Infrastructure Income fund.

By contrast McDermott said Neptune has faded into the background after suffering a series of key departures across the business. “We don’t hear much from Neptune currently.”

The notable departures began when head of distribution Charlie Parker left to join Sanlam UK in 2017.

Over the last year the fund group has lost senior European Opportunities manager Rob Burnett, who left the firm after 16 years to start his own business, and Indian equities manager Kunal Desai who left to join Mark Mobius’ new emerging markets venture.

Neptune has also struggled to retain managers on its US equity desk since team leader Felix Wintle stepped down in May 2016. Its £238m US Opportunities fund has changed hands four times with George Boyd Bowman most recently taking over for exiting US equity head Alistair Unwin.

Gravis’ growing sales team

Gardner will be joining Gravis’ sales team which includes Nick Winder, Ollie Matthews and Robin Shepherd. She said in a statement on Tuesday that she was excited to be joining “an interesting and fast-growing firm with a strong vision to deliver steady, reliable income-focused returns.”

Prior to joining Neptune she worked at Ardevora Asset Management where she assisted the head of institutional clients.

William MacLeod, managing director of Gravis Advisory Limited said her appointment comes as the business grows. “We have a range of new ideas under construction and Cameron will be fully involved in communicating these as well as our current funds offering to our existing and potential investor bases.”

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