Rathbones stays the course despite dip in fund growth

Michael Bow
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UPMARKET wealth manager Rathbone Brothers yesterday said people withdrawing funds to maintain their standard of living had contributed to a small fall in organic fund growth last year.

Despite posting a solid 13 per cent increase in funds managed up to £18bn and adding 1,100 more clients, money leaving the group’s investment funds increased from about £870m to £1.16bn. Inflows were flat at £1.6bn.

The company, which was set up in 1742, said the loss of a big client cut £31m from investment funds managed but that people dipping into their savings to maintain their lifestyles had also had an impact.

Andy Pomfret, chief executive, said: “Anecdotally there are clients whose income has been squeezed It’s got tougher to generate income, and they’re eating into their capital.”

Pre-tax profits at the group were up slightly to £29.2m, while it also increased its dividend 1p to 47p.

The company also announced the appointment of former William de Broë chief executive Philip Howell as deputy chief executive, underscoring its commitment to boost growth.

Pomfret said he hoped to continue with the firm’s core strategy of growing the business organically and through bolt-on acquisitions in the year ahead.

“We’ve proven ourselves to be pretty good at it,” he said. The firm snapped up two smaller boutiques in 2012, R.M. Walkden & Co in April and AIB Jersey, which it purchased in October.