UK/EUROPE – London based Hermes Focus Asset Management Europe (HFAME) has announced the appointment of a number of senior continental European investment bankers to the team that will run the new Hermes European Focus fund, to be launched early next year.

The institutional fund is expected to reach a value of €1bn within a few years.

Christian Strenger and Herman van der Wyck have joined the firm as non-executive directors. Strenger was formerly chief executive officer of mutual fund company, DWS, whilst van der Wyck was vice chairman of UBS Warburg.

Other non-executive board directors will be Tony Watson, chief executive designate of Hermes Pensions Management (HPM), and Alistair Ross Goobey, who will act as part-time chairman.

Marco Ricci also joins HFAME in December as an investment director.
Ricci, who is currently a fund manager at Deutsche Asset Management, comments: “Business communication is too often one-way from companies to investors. I am thrilled to be part of HFAME where we will constructively work with companies in order to unlock shareholder value. The potential to increase shareholder returns in continental Europe is substantial. By helping companies help themselves I believe that we can truly create many win-win situations.”

Ricci is joined by Maria Coello, who moves in-house from the UK Focus fund to become a senior investment analyst.

The appointments follow the announcement in September that Josiane Fanguinovény had joined both HFAME and HPM as continental European and corporate governance manager.

The HFAME team now includes nationals from France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain.