James de Uphaugh, head of Liontrust’s Global Fundamental team and co-founder of Majedie Asset Management, is to retire in February 2024 after more than 36 years in the industry.
De Uphaugh, who manages the £362m Liontrust UK Equity Fund and the £1.1bn Edinburgh Investment Trust, will be replaced on his closed-ended mandate by Imran Sattar, who also joined Liontrust as a fund manager after it acquired Majedie in 2022. Prior to his three years at Majedie, the manager on the Global Fundamental team spent more than 20 years managing UK equity funds at BlackRock.
As part of Edinburgh Investment Trust’s succession plan, Sattar has been appointed deputy manager of the portfolio in lieu of current deputy Chris Field, who is due to retire from Liontrust in November.
Sattar is already a co-manager on Liontrust UK Equity, alongside Field and John King – who came across from Majedie. He will also take over the helm of this mandate from 10 November this year.
According to Edinburgh Investment Trust’s board, there will be no change in its underlying investment process. The investment company will continue to manage a portfolio of between 40 to 50 stocks, most of which are based in the UK, and are chosen through bottom-up fundamentals.
De Uphaugh co-founded Majedie in 2002. Prior to this, he was a managing director at Mercury Asset Management (which was bought by Merrill Lynch, now BlackRock) from 1988.
According to data from FE fundinfo, the Edinburgh Investment Trust has achieved top-quartile returns relative to its average peer in the IT UK Equity Income sector over one, three and five years. It is first place for its gains within the 20-strong sector over the last 12 months, achieving a total return of 23.9% compared to its average peer’s return of 9.1%. It is currently trading on an 8.9% discount to net asset value, according to AIC data.
Liontrust UK Equity, which de Uphaugh has managed since 2003 (and brought across to Liontrust from Majedie), has achieved second-quartile returns over one and five years, and third-quartile returns over three and 10 years.
Elisabeth Stheeman, chair of the Edinburgh Investment Trust’s board, said: “James oversaw the successful transition of the company’s management to the Global Fundamental Team and has delivered impressive investment performance in volatile market conditions.
“Imran has a strong investment pedigree, deep knowledge of the UK equity market, has long experience of managing large investment portfolios, and has worked alongside James and Chris for many years. He and his colleagues are well placed to build on the strong foundations put in place since 2020 and we look forward to working with him.”
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