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Martin Currie bids to boost Asia trust with new manager

Martin Currie bids to boost Asia trust with new manager

The board of the £150m Martin Currie Asia Unconstrained investment trust has added a co-manager as the trust continues to lag in performance terms.

The trust announced in a statement this morning (November 20) it has promoted Damian Taylor to become co-manager working with Andrew Graham.

Mr Taylor had been an employee for five years and the company said Mr Taylor would "complement" Mr Graham’s experience.

The trust enjoyed a strong run in the six months to the end of September 2018, returning 1.8 per cent in net asset value terms compared with a return of 0.39 per cent for the MSCI Asia Ex Japan Index in the same time period.

But over the longer term it has struggled and sits among the bottom half of mandates in performance terms in the AIC Asia Pacific Sector over three and five years, and among the bottom 25 per cent of performers over the past year.

Harry Wells, chairman of the trust said: "Damian Taylor becomes co-manager of the company with Andrew Graham with effect from 1 December 2018.

"Damian joined Martin Currie’s Asia investment team in 2013 and has 18 years of investment experience not only as an active equity investor but also with a background in private equity and investment banking.

"The board believes that Damian's appointment will be complementary to Andrew Graham's role and will strengthen the efforts of the investment manager in executing our mandate."

The trust trades at a discount to net assets of 14 per cent.

david.thorpe@ft.com