By David Ricketts

Of Financial News

 

Aviva Investors has begun redundancy consultations with fund managers across its equities division as the 365 billion-pound ($514.87 billion) investment houses focuses more attention on areas where it has "a competitive edge."

David Cumming, one of the City's best-known fund managers and chief investment officer for the equities team at Aviva Investors, is among the first casualties.

The asset manager said in a statement that the veteran investor is leaving "to pursue other opportunities."

Mr. Cumming joined Aviva Investors in 2018, having been poached by then Aviva Investors Chief Executive Euan Munro, who was also a former colleague at Standard Life Investments.

Mr. Cumming's appointment coincided with Aviva Investors opening a new office in Edinburgh, which acts as its second U.K. hub outside of London.

His departure was first reported by The Mail on Sunday. Among other high profile fund managers believed to be at risk from job cuts is Mikhail Zverev, who heads up global equities at Aviva Investors.

"Since taking over as CEO of Aviva Investors in January, Mark Versey has been clear on the need to focus on areas where we have a competitive edge and are winning business," said an Aviva Investors spokesperson.

Aviva Investors will focus on building its position in real assets, credit, multi-asset and wealth and retirement solutions, as well as responsible investing "to build a market-leading sustainable outcomes franchise, including net-zero aligned propositions," the spokesperson added.

"We have taken the decision to focus our equities business on sustainable outcomes and core strategies where there is clear client demand, namely U.K. and global equities, while retaining sufficient coverage to support our multi-asset strategies," they said.

"A number of roles have been put at risk in our equities team, and we have begun consultations with the impacted individuals. We are unable to provide further details while we go through the consultation process."

The redundancy consultations come a week after it emerged that activist investor Cevian Group had built a 5% stake in Aviva Investors' listed insurance parent Aviva, calling on it to cut costs and return GBP5 billion of excess capital to shareholders.

 

Website: www.fnlondon.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 14, 2021 08:37 ET (12:37 GMT)

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