Ashburton to merge India equity fund with IIFL AMC’s fund

Ashburton Investments, the asset management arm of the FirstRand group, today announced plans to merge its India Equity Opportunities fund with IIFL India Equity Opportunities fund.

IIFL India Equity Opportunities fund is operated by IIFL Asset Management  (IIFL AMC).

Under the terms of the agreement, Jonathan Schiessl, Chief Investment Officer (International), Ashburton Investments, who has been managing the Ashburton India equity fund since its launch in 2012, will continue to manage the merged fund.

Schiessl will join IIFL AMC as CIO and Lead Fund Manager of the merged fund with Swati Jain joining as Head: Institutional Sales to continue distribution of the strategy to international investors.

The merger is subject to all necessary regulatory and board approvals. Investors can continue to access the fund as normal and no action is required from existing investors, according to joint statement.

Ashburton India Equity Opportunities Fund is a USD-denominated fund offering investors access to opportunities in India. Its top Indian holdings include HDFC, Infosys, HCL Technologies, Arvind, Power Grid, Godrej Industries among others.

Earlier this year, in a media interview, Schiessl had said that the Ashburton India Equity Opportunities Fund gave a return of over 90 per cent since its launch in 2012.

IIFL AMC is a part of IIFL Investment Managers with  assets under management of around $4 billion with differentiated suite including mutual funds, alternative investment funds and venture capital funds spanning across public and private equities, fixed income securities and real estate.

“We were one of the first investment managers to give African investors access to investments into the fast growing and changing economy that is India.  With our new partners IIFL AMC, we believe that our clients will experience even deeper and broader access to the Indian equity markets,” added Boshoff Grobler, CEO, Ashburton Investments, said.

Recently, Centrum Capital acquired South African financial services firm FirstRand Bank‘s India microfinance business to boost its lending operations focused on retail and small and medium enterprises.

FirstRand Bank had earlier announced its plans to exit retail and SME lending operations in India.

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