Funds Hub

Money managers under the microscope

The return of Duffield

April 16, 2009

The reported return of John Duffield to fund management has generated plenty of column inches but will have raised few eyebrows among those within London’s fund management community.

rtxb5urHaving founded Jupiter Asset Management in the mid-1980s and sold it to Commerzbank, and then set up New Star Asset Management in 2000 before seeing its share price collapse and it sold to Henderson, it was always unlikely the industrious Duffield would walk away from the industry.

His new venture, Hyde Park Asset Management, has reportedly hired New Star’s old headquarters in London’s wealthy Knightsbridge district. Initially it will run money for Duffield’s own family but could expand to run money for other family offices, Interactive Investor reported.

New Star came unstuck after taking on 260 million pounds in gross debt to fund a return of capital to shareholders, while poor investment performance and bad calls on sectors such as banks also helped persuade some clients to take their money out.

But the City knows all about New Star’s strong investment performance during the bull market years, led by managers such as Stephen Whittaker and Richard Pease.

If Odey Asset Management’s Crispin Odey is correct in predicting the next bull market may already have started, then it will be very interesting to watch how Duffield’s new venture shapes up.

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