The move, which saw Henderson Global Investors lose the management contract and will result in changes to the fund’s investment policy, led to the trust being placed under review by Morningstar.
Robin Parbrook and King Fuei Lee, two of Schroders’ senior portfolio managers based in Hong Kong and Singapore respectively, are to take control of the Henderson Asian Growth trust’s assets.
Henderson’s Andrew Beal has run the fund since September 2005. Its most recent factsheet shows underperformance over six months, one year and three years.
“The board was very impressed both by the strength and depth of Schroders’ research team in Asia and by the rigorous and innovative approach to portfolio construction and capital protection employed by the portfolio managers,” a statement explained.
In addition, the board said it will seek shareholder approval to change the trust’s investment policy to one that seeks a high rate of total return from companies operating primarily in Asia, including Australasia but excluding Japan.
This approach is similar to that used by the Schroders’ managers in their £1.1bn Schroder ISF Asian Total Return Fund, although the trust will have a bias towards small and mid cap companies.
Since inception in November 2007 to 30 November 2012, the Schroder ISF Asian Total Return Fund has returned 125% against the MSCI AC Asia Pacific ex Japan benchmark’s 25% gain.
Jackie Beard, director of closed-end fund research at Morningstar, said the analyst rating on the trust has been moved from neutral to under review, adding: “We will be talking with the new managers about their plans for the management of [Henderson Asian Growth].”