Two top staff to depart Woodford’s fund business

Two key members involved in getting Neil Woodford’s fledgling fund management business off the ground are to leave the group this month.

Former Invesco Perpetual head of global equity products Nick Hamilton joined the group as a partner and chief operating officer but will now leave the group.

Investment Adviser has learned the group has hired James Newman as head of operations from Egerton Capital. He started this week.

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Gray Smith, who is Mr Woodford’s chief legal and compliance officer, was hired from Mishcon de Reya and was key in helping the manager set the business up.

The group announced at the end of last month Simon Osborne had been hired as head of compliance and Gavin St John-Heath as chief risk and operations officer.

This now means the group has separate heads of risk, compliance and operations, which will tie in with the fact the company said it was now operating in a “regulation-heavy environment”.

Craig Newman, chief executive at Woodford Investment Management, said: “Nick and Gray helped us get over the line. We thank them for their commitment and wish them all the best in the future.”

The group also last month hired David Brailsford, who has joined as data architecture delivery manager from IBM.

The group runs more than £8.5bn in assets under management and advice and the firm employs more than 30 people.