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Giles Hargreave steps down as CEO to focus on funds

Giles Hargreave steps down as CEO to focus on funds

Giles Hargreave is stepping down as chief executive of Hargreave Hale to focus on running money.

Hargreave (pictured) will remain chairman of the company but the day-to-day management of the business will be taken over by Stuart Brookes and Lee Finlayson, who have been named joint managing directors.

Brookes, who joined Hargreave Hale in 1994, was previously finance and operations director, while Finlayson, who has been at the company since 1991, headed its London office.

‘The firm has got a lot bigger over the years and we now employ 180 people,’ Hargreave said. ‘We have expanded across our unit trust, private client and advisory businesses, and we have our own back office, settling our own trades.

‘It is a demanding job for a chief executive and it seemed sensible for me to spread the load and devote my time to running the unit trusts and the money of some private clients I introduced to the firm.’

Brookes and Finlayson were already members of Hargreave Hale’s executive committee, which Hargreave does not sit on but will continue to oversee in his role as chairman.

The company has £4.2 billion in assets under management, of which £2.5 billion is held in the seven unit trusts it runs through its tie-up with Marlborough Fund Managers.

Hargreave manages the Marlborough Special Situations, UK Micro Cap Growth and Nano Cap Growth funds and is co-manager of the Multi Cap Income fund.

Despite being 65, he said he aims to continue running money ‘for a while’, adding that ‘experience is a great asset’.

The flagship £821.9 million Special Situations fund has been a consistent outperformer and has returned 177.6% over five years, compared with the UK Smaller Companies sector average of 137.2%. The group’s £981.4 million Multi Cap Income fund is sitting at the top of its sector, having just passed its third anniversary, returning 67.1% versus the peer group’s 37.2%.  

Despite growing in size, Hargreave said he did not foresee capacity issues with either fund.

‘Multi Cap Income is just short of £1 billion but it is invested across the market cap spectrum,’ he said. ‘The next biggest, Special Situations, is invested 60% in small caps and 40% in mid caps. It holds over 200 stocks and there are plenty of these we have the capacity to increase our stake in.’

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