UK – Merrill Lynch Investment Managers (MLIM) has hired Gartmore’s Quintin Price as chief investment officer (CIO) for the Europe, Middle East, Africa and Pacific region (EMEA Pacific).

Price, who at Gartmore was joint global CIO equities, is due to start within the next six months, a spokesman for MLIM told IPE. He will report to Bob Doll, CIO MLIM.

Doll said: “Quintin’s knowledge of investment markets, instruments and alternative products combined with his experience of managing investors will help us take advantage of a wide variety of opportunities in the industry.”

"Gartmore has an excellent team of experienced investment professionals. They will ensure there is minimum impact to the management of our clients' investment mandates over the transition period," spokesman Eoin Brophy stated.

MLIM said it had assets under management total US$479bn (€370.1bn) as of March 31.

Last month Merrill Lynch said it was in the final stages of negotiation to buy Philips’ pensions and asset management businesses, known as the Pensions Competence Center and Philips Investment Management.

Electronics giant Philips is to outsource the management of its €12bn in Dutch pension assets to Merrill Lynch Investment Management in a move that will see 55 staff transfer to MLIM.

Separately, Watson Wyatt said it has appointed Hewitt Associates’ Jenni Nicholls as a senior investment consultant to its investment practice in London. At Hewitt, she worked in its investment team.

Nick Watts, European head of investment consulting, said: “She brings with her many relevant skills and an enthusiastic approach which will enrich our service offering to our pension fund clients.”

The consulting firm said Nicholls’ qualifications and experience cover investment strategy and asset liability studies, DC investment, transition management and trustee training.

The firm has also appointed Lloyd Raynor from Mercer Investment Consulting and Sasha Lanham-Parker who worked at Julius Baer. In addition, Paul Francis from Mellon Investment Consulting will join the Firm during May.

“These appointments reflect the good progress we are making in the market place in terms of growing our business and it is always gratifying to be able to attract good people to Watson Wyatt,” Watts said.