Value Partners 

Value Partners Group has named David Townsend as managing director, EMEA Business, effective 21 April 2022. 

Townsend is responsible for leading Value Partners' engagement with institutional investors in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). He will also take responsibility for the Group's coverage of international wholesale distribution partners across the EMEA region. 

Based in London, Mr. Townsend reports to the Group's president, June Wong.

Townsend has extensive experience in the investment management and financial industry. Most recently, he was advising Alderwood Capital LLP as the Head of Investor Relations. Before joining Alderwood Capital, he served as Head of EMEA Institutional at First Eagle Investment Management, in charge of the firm's London office. 

Prior to that, he served as Managing Director, Head of EMEA and Global Consultant Relations at Martin Currie Investment Management. He was also Head of UK Institutional Sales at AXA Investment Managers UK and at Framlington Investment Management. He started his career at Fidelity.

Wong said: "He brings nearly 30 years of experience in institutional and wholesale investor relations, marketing and sales to the role. We see robust demand from overseas institutional investors looking to create specialized China mandates. 

"Global pension and endowments currently only have around 3% to 5% of their portfolio exposure in China, and there is potential for that number to grow. As we aim to enhance our leadership in the EMEA region further, David's extensive experience, knowledge and relationships in the industry will make him an invaluable asset to our business. We are delighted to have him on board." 
Edmond de Rothschild Group

Edmond de Rothschild Group is growing its private banking business in the Middle East, with two new appointments: Saman Habibian as Market Leader Middle East & Africa, and Manuel Sturm, as COO Market Middle East & Africa. 

This is part of the Group's wider development strategy to expand its Private Banking activities in the Middle East and significantly grow its presence and client base in the region. 

Habibian was head of Middle East at Bank Pictet in Zurich, joining in 2019, before which working for Bank Julius Baer from 2010, notably as head of GCC International, then successively as CEO Julius Baer Bahrain and deputy global head Middle East and Africa.

Sturm was chief of staff for the Middle East and Africa region at Bank Pictet in Zurich. Prior to that he was head of business management of emerging markets region at Bank Julius Baer 

Michel Longhini, CEO of Private Banking, said: "We're thrilled to welcome two experts with more than 20 years of experience in the region to support our ambitions. These hires will allow us to expand our services to clients in the booming Middle East market."

Schroders Capital Real Estate

Schroders Capital Real Estate has appointed Rebecca Gates its head of UK asset management, a newly created role reporting to head of UK investment Nick Montgomery.

Gates joins the firm from LaSalle Investment Management, an independent subsidiary of global real estate company Jones Lang LaSalle, where she held the same role.

She also sat on the UK investment committee and the UK management board.

In her new role, Gates will be focused on the management of funds, including the Schroders Capital UK Real Estate fund and Schroder Real Estate Investment Trusts.

She will also oversee the onboarding of the £3.5bn Scottish Widows direct real estate portfolio.

Montgomery said: "We are very pleased that Rebecca is joining our team. Rebecca's key focus will be on maintaining long term outperformance for our clients against the backdrop of a rapidly changing and more operationally focused real estate market.

"Rebecca's experience will enable the team to continue to develop our hospitality-led approach to asset and property management, with every asset managed as a business in itself.

"Rebecca will also work closely with our specialist ESG colleagues to ensure that Schroders Capital delivers on its sustainable investment objectives, from both an environmental and social value perspective."

Gates added: "I am incredibly excited to be joining such a well regarded business and team during its current phase of substantial growth. Having many years of property experience in occupier engagement, focused on operational excellence, I am looking forward to guiding the delivery of these and helping to secure strong investment performance for our clients."

BMO Real Estate Investments

The board of BMO Real Estate Investments (BREI) has appointed Matthew Howard as lead manager, effective 19 July.

Howard, who is fund manager of the RSA Shareholders Real Estate fund and deputy manager of the BMO Commercial Property Trust, will succeed Peter Lowe as lead manager of BREI.

Lowe will continue to manage BREI's assets, supported by the wider team within BMO Real Estate Partners (BMO REP), until 19 July, at which point his lead manager responsibilities will transfer to Howard.

Following the transfer, the board said Lowe will continue to assist Howard and the team "to ensure an orderly transition".

Howard joined BMO REP in 2017 and sits on the investment committee, prior to which he worked at Federated Hermes.

The board also confirmed that chair Vikram Lall, who was due to step down from the board later this year, will continue as chair "beyond this period", to "provide continuity for shareholders" in light of the change in lead manager and retirement of Rebecca Gates as a director.

Lall said: "We are delighted that Matthew will take on the role as our lead manager and look forward to working with Matthew on building on our impressive NAV performance track record.

"We continue to believe the company's share price is not reflective of [the] company's value and quality of portfolio. The board are addressing the fact that the shareholder returns do not match the performance of the portfolio."  

Fidelity International

Fidelity International has hired Helen Huang as managing director of China.

She will head the asset management company that has been set up with the approval of the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC).

Huang joins Fidelity from Hwabao WP Fund Management, where she was most recently the chief executive.


Kevin McQuillan has been promoted to partner and Gemma Whale to counsel, both in the corporate team of Appleby on Jersey. 

The firm has promoted a total of two partners and five lawyers to the position of counsel across its Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Isle of Man, Jersey and Mauritius offices.

Appleby Group managing partner Malcolm Moller said: "I would like to congratulate each and every one of our lawyers on their promotions and for reaching this important milestone in their career. 

"It is a testament to their commitment to being trusted advisers to our clients and reflects the contribution each of them has made to our firm. Together they underline the quality, diversity and depth of talent that supports the delivery of our strategy and inclusive culture."  

Tenet Group

Tenet Group, the UK financial adviser support network, has appointed two new regional business managers.

Julie Mulvanny and Rory Jackson are joining the firm's sales and recruitment team to assist with its growth, introducing new firms and advisors across Tenet's brands, including the network (Tenet Network Services), its owned advice businesses (Tenet&You and Tenet Mortgage Solutions), and Tenet Compliance Services.

Mulvanny has spent the last 23 years at Prudential. Her roles there included heading up the Scotland and Northern Ireland account management teams, and head of business development for pensions and retirement.

Jackson is joining as regional business manager for London and the South East. He brings in-depth regulatory financial services experience in areas including recruitment, resourcing, and sales. He was previously an associate director at TCC Group, and also served in the Royal Navy for seven years.