Neptune Investment Management has announced Ali Unwin, head of US equities and manager of its US Opportunities and Global Technology funds, is leaving the firm, while it has also hired Jill Carlson to advise the firm on blockchain technology.
Unwin, who is believed to be joining a start-up firm, took over the £260m US Opportunities fund in July 2017, following the departure of Robin Milway.
He was also lead manager of the £42.2m Global Technology fund, which launched in December 2015.
As a result, George Boyd-Bowman, currently manager of the group's £35.1m US Income fund, has been promoted to head of US equities and will take over the day-to-day management of the US Opportunities fund, assisted by Storm Uru and Neptune CEO and founder Robin Geffen.
Geffen is also taking over the management of the Global Technology fund, assisted by Ewan Thompson, Chris Taylor and Boyd-Bowman. CIO and chief economist James Dowey will also assist with the fund's country allocations. The firm is also hiring a further technology analyst at the start of September.
Geffen said: "I am excited about this opportunity for George, who has proven himself to be a great talent at Neptune over the past eight years.
"I believe he will provide great long term performance over the next decade and beyond in the US for Neptune's investors, just as Rob Burnett has done in Europe, Chris Taylor in Japan, Mark Martin in the UK and Ewan Thompson in emerging markets over the past decade and more. We wish Ali all the best for the future".
The US Opportunities fund has seen a number of management changes; Felix Wintle ran the fund for 11 years before leaving in May 2016 amid a restructuring where James Hackman then took over the portfolio. He exited shortly after Milway joined, who was then handed the fund. Milway left ten months later in 2017, when Unwin was handed the reins.
Over the past one year to 24 August, the US Opportunities fund has returned 25.6% compared to the IA North America sector return of 18.4%, according to FE.
In addition, over the past year the US Income fund has gained 21%.
Meanwhile, Neptune has also announced it has recurited Jill Carlson as a special advisor to the firm on blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.
She has previously advised the World Bank and IMF as well as other worldwide organisations.
Carlson studied at Harvard, before doing some of the first academic research on blockchain at Oxford before moving to Cambridge to continue her research, and then working at blockchain start up Chain, in which Visa subsequently bought a substantial stake.
Geffen told Investment Week: "We are not about to launch a crypto fund, but we think it is an incredibly important areato have an understanding on, it will have a lot of consequences.
"There has been a lot of hot air and excitement but the technology behind blockchain really is very important for the future."
Neptune CIO Dowey added: "We are delighted to be working with Jill to understand the long term impact of this important technology on the economy."
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