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Specialist asset management group Polar Capital Holdings has announced the recruitment of Gareth Powell and Daniel Mahony to set up a healthcare business unit and launch the Polar Capital Healthcare Opportunities Fund.

The long-only fund is expected to be launched in December, and will aim to generate the maximum possible return through investment globally in the healthcare sector. The Polar Healthcare Opportunities Fund will use a multi-cap approach, with a conviction-driven process built mainly through a bottom-up investment strategy. Performance of the fund will be measured against the MSCI Healthcare Index.

Powell has joined from Axa Framlington, where he spent eight years as manager of the Axa Framlington Biotech Fund. While at university, he worked at Yamanouchi, a leading Japanese pharmaceutical company (later to become Astellas), funded by a grant from the Medical Research Council.

He also worked at various academic laboratories including the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology in Oxford and the Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research, receiving sponsorship for this placement through the Wellcome Trust. He was also a research analyst in life sciences at the Oxford Business School.

Mahony has spent nine years experience as a sell-side analyst following the healthcare sector. He was most recently a senior healthcare analyst at Morgan Stanley, leading a team that covered European biotechnology, medical technology and healthcare service industries. Previously he spent two years with ING Barings in New York, following a spell as a research scientist for Schering Plough in California.

'We are delighted to welcome Gareth Powell and Daniel Mahony, who offer nearly two decades of experience in healthcare, from pharmaceuticals to biotech to services,' says Polar Capital chief executive Mark Kary. 'Healthcare is currently one of the most exciting markets from an investment perspective and we are pleased to have two such experienced individuals to build our healthcare franchise.'

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