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Rees-Mogg to retain interest in fund manager

Rees-Mogg to retain interest in fund manager

Jacob Rees-Mogg has stepped down from his role as adviser to fundhouse Somerset Capital Management following his appointment to the new cabinet, but he is not expected to give up his partnership in the firm.

Mr Rees-Mogg was a partner and adviser to emerging market fund management firm Somerset Capital Management until last night (July 24) when he joined the cabinet as Leader of the House of Commons, an administrative role that involves organising the government’s business in parliament.  

Under the ministerial code he is not permitted to exert any control over the running of a business, though he did not have to resign as a partner. He can simply place his partnership into a trust over which he has no direct control, known as a blind trust. FTAdviser understands that this is the option he chose.

Under a standard blind trust arrangement, an individual can still receive income from an investment, but cannot make decisions about the investment, such as vote at company meetings.

The company could not confirm the details of Mr Rees-Mogg's arrangement at this point.

Somerset Capital Management is an emerging markets focused fund business, and is run as a limited liability partnership. 

Mr Rees-Mogg helped found the business in 2007 but stepped away from a full-time chief executive role with the company in 2010, when he became a member of parliament, and has been a part-time adviser since then. 

The company runs four funds and a number of segregated mandates all of which invest in emerging markets.

It reported a profit of £34m for the year to the end of March 2018 on a turnover of £45m.

The firm has asset under management today (July 25) of £5.5bn. 

The members of the 23-strong partnership, who include Mr Rees-Mogg, split £25.2m between them at the end of the financial year, up from just over £21m in the previous year. 

Some members of the partnership also received a combined £8m for their work during the year, but it is not clear how much, if any, of this was paid to Mr Rees-Mogg. 

Oliver Cawley, a partner at Somerset Capital Management, said: “Jacob was one of the co-founders of Somerset Capital Management when it was started in 2007.

"He played an integral role in helping to shape the firm and Somerset’s early success.

"While Jacob stepped back from day to day work at Somerset Capital when he became a member of parliament in 2010, he has remained an advisor to the firm, supporting its growth to become one of the UK’s leading emerging market asset management boutiques.

"We wish him well as he now steps down immediately from his part time role in accordance with the ministerial code."

david.thorpe@ft.com