New Star targets Taiwan expansion

With new MD James Campion aboard, the UK-based fund house seeks to build upon its Hong Kong base.

James Campion, former head of retail mutual funds at Schroder Investment Management in Hong Kong, has joined New Star Asset Management as its managing director for Asia-Pacific. His mandate is to expand the regional business, particularly into Taiwan and Singapore, while Diccon Martin, who has served as regional director since New Star set up shop in Hong Kong last year, will focus now on continuing the Hong Kong business.

New Star has no presence in Taiwan, which it reckons to be the most attractive market in the region. Campion intends to build a Taiwan team as distribution opportunities grow. New Star wants to not only sell its Dublin-listed line of products there, but also partner with domestic investment trust companies to sub-advise their international offerings.

"I'm dubious about buying a domestic local firm," Campion says. "But new regulations in Taiwan make it easier to market our offshore funds. The distinction between securities investment trusts and securities investment consultants is becoming minimal."

Campion is an 11-year veteran from Schroders, spending five years at the firm in London and then six years in Hong Kong. He has 24 years of industry experience marketing mutual funds. After leaving the firm in the spring, he decided to remain in this region. He says he favoured a change of pace, leaving a big organization geared toward beating benchmarks for a smaller house focused on absolute returns. He reports to Philip Goldsmith, international managing director in London.

New Star was founded in 2000 by John Duffield, former director at Jupiter Asset Management in the UK, and has since amassed $17 billion of assets under management.

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