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Newton hires co-leads for EM and Asian equities strategies

Duo co-managed the Axa Framlington global emerging markets funds


Kirsten Hastings

Paul Birchenough and Ian Smith are to join Newton Investment Management on 19 October.

Alongside Sophia Whitbread, they will co-lead the firm’s £1.5bn (€1.65bn) emerging-market and Asian equities strategies, including the BNY Mellon global EM fund.

Curt Custand, chief investment officer at Newton, part of BNY Mellon Investment Management, said: “Emerging-market and Asian equities are a core part of Newton’s capabilities.

“Paul and Ian are highly- experienced investment professionals that share our focus on fundamental stock selection and, importantly, our strong conviction for investing with a long-term, thematic approach and full ESG integration.”

The appointment coincides with the departure of Rob Marshall, lead portfolio manager of the strategy, who will leave Newton at the end of November after 21 years at the firm.

Long-time partners

Birchenough and Smith join from Axa Investment Managers where they were co-lead portfolio managers of Axa Framlington’s global emerging markets capabilities.

The pair first met, however, when they worked at Nevsky Capital where Birchenough was a Latin America investment analyst and Smith was a financials analyst.

The more, the merrier

In addition to Newton’s recent portfolio management hires, it has also recruited three analysts to join its central research team.

Connor Middleton joins as global financials analyst from JP Morgan, Fei Zhou Chen joins as a global analyst from PriceWaterhouseCoopers and Jonny Urwin joins from UBS as global insurance analyst.