Two Woodford employees register new venture

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Two Woodford employees register new venture
Neil Woodford [Jonathan Atkins/Handout via REUTERS]

Two employees of Woodford Capital Management, the firm launched a year ago by Neil Woodford following the failure of his UK Equity Income fund, have registered a new venture with the Financial Conduct Authority.

The employees Jonathan Adair, who is chief technology officer of WCM and Kristian Penttila, a relationship manager at the firm registered Curated Capital as an appointed representative of Thornbridge Investment Management’s network in November 2021.

The firm is registered to an address in Old Street, London.

According to Companies House, the firm was incorporated back on May 27, 2021 and Adair is listed as a director, but Penttila is not.

Adair and Penttila, listed as ‘employed by’ Curated Capital on the FCA’s register, started working at WCM in February 2021.

Since it was set up, WCM has focused on investing on behalf of professional investors and high-net-worth individuals, according to Penttila’s LinkedIn profile.

WCM is registered in the Cayman Islands and does not manage any UK funds.

FTAdviser approached both Adair and Penttila for more information on their new venture.

WCM was set up by Woodford after his Equity Income fund was wound up and taken over by Link.

The Equity Income fund, launched back in 2015 by Woodford after he left Invesco, was managed by Woodford Investment Management - a firm both Adair and Penttila are former employees of.

WIM was eventually fired by Link Fund Solutions, a firm which came in to help manage the Equity Income fund after its performance began to dip in 2017. 

Having built a reputation upon investing in large companies, Woodford started to invest in smaller firms which became harder to sell quickly when performance dipped.

Investors started pulling money out at a rate of £9mn a day, which led to the fund eventually closing in October 2019 because it couldn’t deliver investors their cash quick enough.

The management of this fund is currently under investigation by the FCA, and there has been recent pressure from MPs on the regulator to close the investigation.

The FCA told FTAdviser today (February 9) there is no further update on this investigation at present.

As of August 2021, there was close to £124mn of investors’ cash stuck in the Woodford’s Equity Income fund, according to administrators.

A law firm begun court proceedings against Link last year over its handling of the Woodford Equity Income fund, which issued a claim form on behalf of an initial group of 100 of the fund’s investors in an attempt to recover their losses.