James Clunie will be appointed manager of the Jupiter Absolute Return Fund with effect from 1 September 2013.
Clunie (pictured), who joined Jupiter on 15 July 2013, will take over the GBP482m fund from Philip Gibbs, who will be retiring from fund management in October 2014.
In his 24 year career in investment management, Clunie has developed a strong reputation for managing absolute return strategies. As manager of the equity long/short SWIP UK Flexible Strategy Fund, he delivered attractive risk adjusted returns of 23.1 per cent during the three years to 22 April 2013 against 2.4 per cent for the fund’s benchmark, three month LIBOR. The fund’s performance has been recognised by Lipper in 2013 as the best fund over three years in the Absolute Return GBP High category and in 2012 as the best fund over three years in the Absolute Return Medium category.
While at SWIP, Clunie also managed a number of UK long-only funds, was an investment director covering equities and also a member of SWIP’s investment risk committee.
He was a senior lecturer in finance at the University of Edinburgh between 2003 and 2007, prior to which he worked as head of global equities at Aberdeen Asset Management.
Clunie, who remains an Honorary Professor at the University of Edinburgh, has a PhD in short selling and has published books and academic papers on the subject. He has also consulted for the World Bank and lectured at SWUFE, a leading Chinese university.
Gibbs, who joined Jupiter in 1997, ran the Jupiter Financial Opportunities Fund between June 1997 and June 2010, when Guy de Blonay became co-manager. During this time, it produced a return of 792 per cent compared with 38 per cent for the benchmark FTSE Financials Index during this period. Gibbs has also managed the Jupiter Second Split Investment Trust and its predecessor the Jupiter Split Trust since 1998, as well as various institutional mandates and the Jupiter Absolute Return Fund, which was launched in 2009. Gibbs will remain as manager of the Jupiter Second Split Investment Trust until 31 October 2014, when the trust is due to wind up. He will then retire from the company.
Edward Bonham Carter, chief executive of Jupiter Asset Management, says: “Philip has delivered outstanding long-term returns to clients during his career at Jupiter and I would like to thank him for the contribution he has made to the company during this time.
“Demand for absolute return and multi asset strategies is growing, with investors increasingly looking for strategies that can provide capital growth with lower volatility. We added resource in this area in 2010, appointing Miles Geldard and Lee Manzi to run multi asset and convertible portfolios, and are pleased that James, who has developed a strong reputation for managing both long/short and long-only portfolios, has joined us to help take forward the development of our absolute return strategies."
Gibbs says: “It has been a pleasure to have served clients in my funds over the past 16 years and I am looking forward to continuing with the management of the Jupiter Second Split Investment Trust until October 2014. I wish James well in his management of the Jupiter Absolute Return Fund.”
Clunie says: “Jupiter has an excellent reputation as a fund management house and I am very much looking forward to the challenge of delivering strong returns for clients in the fund.”