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By Bradley Gerrard | Published Sep 24, 2012

Close Brothers AM hires Riitta Hujanen

Close Brothers Asset Management has hired former Schroders European equity fund manager Riitta Hujanen.

Ms Hujanen left Schroders in September last year and in January Investment Adviser revealed she had set up a “strategic analysis, market and competition research, capital markets and investor relations consulting” firm called Salama Consulting.

Close Brothers said that Ms Hujanen has joined the company as an investment client director.

The company has two other investment client directors who, its website said, provide regulated investment advice and support business development among advisers and other financial intermediaries.

Ms Hujanen ran European equity funds for Schroders, which she joined in November 2007 from pan-European smaller companies investment specialists Montanaro Asset Management.

Investment Adviser revealed in March last year that Schroders was merging Ms Hujanen’s £54.1m European fund into its institutional European fund run by Martin Skanberg and Rory Bateman, head of European equities.

At the time of the merger, Schroders said Ms Hujanen would focus her value style on her remaining mandate – the €68.3m (£57m) ISF Euro Active Value fund – but this fund has since been handed to Mr Skanberg.

Ms Hujanen’s European fund ranked bottom quartile at the time of the merger, having delivered a return of 3.6 per cent in the three years to March 7 2011 compared with the IMA Europe excluding UK sector average of 12.5 per cent, according to Morningstar. The institutional European fund, which has a retail share class, has produced top-quartile returns over one, three, five and 10-year time frames.

During Mr Skanberg’s tenure on the fund – since May 2006 –the fund has produced a top-quartile return of 36.7 per cent compared with the IMA Europe excluding UK sector average return of 18 per cent, according to FE Analytics.

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