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Graham French to depart M&G

by Elsa Buchanan on Nov 18, 2013 at 15:40

Graham French to depart M&G

(Update) M&G's renowned Global Basics manager Graham French is to retire from M&G, Wealth Manager can reveal.

His deputy manager Randeep Somel will take over the Global Basics fund following French's retirement which is effective from today, marking an end to the fund manager's 25-year career at the firm. M&G said there will no change to the way the £4.3 billion fund is managed.

It will remain an unconstrained, conviction-led portfolio with around 60 stocks.

His departure follows a period of underperformance with the M&G Global Basics fund , with a 4.7% return over the past three years versus a 33.2% rise by its composite benchmark.

French,who has managed the fund since November 2000, said: 'After nearly 25 years with M&G, the time has come to pass the baton to the next generation of fund manager. I can retire in the knowledge that I leave the shareholders in Global Basics in the very capable hands of Randeep.

'Randeep and I have worked alongside each other for more than five years. He knows the portfolio intimately and is therefore ideally placed to be the next steward of the Global Basics concept of thematic investment.'  

He added: 'I will be available to Randeep as an adviser for the next six months, but he is now firmly in the driving seat. I will be watching closely, not least because much of my own pension remains invested in Global Basics.' 

Deputy manager of the M&G Global Basics Fund since 2010, Somel is another home-grown global equity fund managers at M&G alongside Matthew Vaight, manager of the £1.2 billion M&G Global Emerging Markets fund, and Stuart Rhodes, manager of the £7.6 billion M&G Global Dividend  fund.

Somel has been part of the global team since he joined M&G nearly nine years ago.

He stepped down as lead manager of £1.3 billion M&G Managed Growth in July, leaving deputy manager Somel to take the reins.

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