Jupiter buys stake in US fund house

Jupiter buys stake in US fund house

Jupiter has become the latest asset management firm to hit the acquisition trail by taking a minority stake in US asset manager NZS Capital, with which it has entered a strategic partnership. 

NZS Capital is a newly launched fund house, co-founded by Brad Slingerland and Brinton Johns. The duo worked on global equity mandates at Janus Capital for 14 years before leaving to set up this venture. 

Mr Slingerland briefly worked with Andrew Formica, the current Jupiter chief executive, when Mr Formica was co-chief executive of Janus Henderson Investors, the company created by the merger of Janus Capital and Henderson Global Investors.

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Jupiter’s assets under management have fallen from £50.1bn in early 2018 to £45.1bn at the end of September 2019.

The first wave of redemptions from the funds came as investors exited the company’s fixed income strategies, and just as flows into those products started to recover, Alexander Darwall, who ran a range of European equity funds for the firm, announced his intention to leave the company and set up his own firm.

This prompted a wave of outflows from the open-ended funds he managed, and subsequently the board of the European Opportunities trust announced it was moving the mandate to Mr Darwall’s new firm, Devon Investment Management.

The board of the Jupiter UK Growth investment trust has also indicated it is reviewing whether to maintain the current fund manager arrangements. 

Mr Formica previously told FTAdviser that small acquisitions and growing the investment trust business by winning the right to manage trusts from other firms were in Jupiter's sights.

Commenting on the deal with NZS he said: “This is a really exciting opportunity for us to partner with a promising business from the very outset.

"Brad and Brinton are talented fund managers with a carefully-constructed process that has the potential to deliver long-term returns. They redefine the conventional approach to evaluating companies and instead focus on their ability to innovate and adapt in the digital age."

He added: “Our early conversations with clients suggest that this approach to investing in global growth companies will be of great interest.

"It also marks our first step into the US, a large and sophisticated market which presents an attractive growth option not just for NZS strategies but equally for Jupiter’s existing capabilities.”

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