Unigestion appoints UK chairman

Miles O’Connor takes on the newly-created role at the asset manager, which is strengthening its presence in London.

Switzerland-headquartered asset manager Unigestion has appointed Miles O’Connor to the newly created role of chairman of the board of Unigestion UK, according to a statement from the firm.

O’Connor takes up the London-based role today.

He previously held the roles of UK institutional and head of EMEA institutional at Schroder Investment Management, and has more than 30 years of corporate management experience in Europe, the firm said.

Bernard Sabrier, group chairman of Unigestion, said O’Connor’s appointment would help the firm build new relationships with UK investors, as well as strengthening existing ones.

“We are delighted that Miles is joining the Unigestion family and we have full confidence that he will be successful in both guiding the board and contributing to the growth of Unigestion in the UK institutional market,” he said. 

“With our increasing presence in the UK following this year’s expansion of our London team, we see the region as one of long-term growth for Unigestion.”

On Monday Unigestion announced it had made four senior hires in London as part of a “considered push” to strengthen its European team, with a particular focus on its secondary and direct investment activities, as reported by Private Equity International.

The firm is currently in market with its debut direct investment fund and its latest secondaries offering. In April it held a first close on Unigestion Direct Opportunities 2015 with commitments in excess of half its €200 million target, as reported by PEI.

The fund will look to partner with sector specialists to make minority investments in 12 to 15 privately-owned companies around the world which operate in the mid-market and have an enterprise value of less than €1 billion.

In August the firm held a first close on Unigestion Secondary Opportunity Fund IV on €177 million against a target of €300 million, as reported by PEI sister title Secondaries Investor.