Schroders' Asian-focused funds have been placed under review by FundCalibre, as analysts wait to see how long-serving manager Matthew Dobbs' retirement will affect the running of the mandates.
Schroders confirmed Dobbs would retire at the end of 2021 after four decades with the firm, handing the management of a suite of funds over to his deputies.
Richard Sennitt, who is currently the lead manager on the Schroder Asian Income fund, will take over Dobbs' Asia portfolios alongside Abbas Barkhordar.
These include two investment trusts, Schroder Oriental Income and Schroder Asia Pacific, alongside Schroder Asian Alpha Plus.
Meanwhile, Dobbs' global and international small-cap funds, including the Schroder Small-Cap Discovery fund, will be handed over to Bob Kaynor, Luke Biermann and Alex Deane.
Lena Tsymbaluk, senior analyst at Morningstar, said Dobbs was a highly rated manager, with his 30-plus years' experience in Asian equities "making him among the most experienced managers in the space".
As a result, his funds are positively rated across the board, with Schroder Asia Pacific and Schroder Asian Alpha Plus having Morningstar analyst ratings of Silver.
Dobbs' track record on these two mirror mandates, Tsymbaluk said, was "impressive", returning 8% annualised since taking over the investment trust in November 1995. "The strategy's risk-adjusted returns are also excellent across all time periods, when compared to peers," Tsymbaluk added.
Similarly, AJ Bell's active portfolio range uses the full suite of Schroders' Asian funds across its offerings, while Schroder Asian Alpha Plus and Schroder Oriental Income have Elite ratings from FundCalibre.
All three analyst firms said they would wait until they had spoken to Sennitt and Barkhordar before assessing the ratings the funds currently possess.
FundCalibre's managing director Darius McDermott said the Elite ratings given to two mandates would be placed under review. "Matthew has obviously been instrumental in building an extremely successful Asian equity franchise for Schroders over more than two decades, and his expertise will be a loss to the company and investors," he said.
"However, Matthew's departure has been well sign-posted and there is a long handover period, so we don't feel there is a need for a snap decision at this time. Richard Sennitt has worked with Matthew for many years - the two managers acting as alternates on each other's funds.
"While we know Richard and the franchise very well, we will want to have a meeting to discuss the enhanced responsibilities, before deciding on the ratings for Schroder Asian Alpha Plus and Schroder Oriental Income."