Jamie Hammond, Deputy CEO – Head of EMEA Region at iM Global Partner – Sales Manager of the Month

Jamie Hammond is our Sales Manager of the Month for the month of August.

Investor Relation Specialist

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Before joining iM Global Partner, Jamie was CEO of AllianceBernstein Limited (UK) and Head of the EMEA Client Group. He joined AB in January 2016, with responsibility for sales, marketing and client service functions in the EMEA region. Prior to this, he spent 15 years with Franklin Templeton Investments, most recently as the CEO of their UK regulated entities and Managing Director, Europe. He joined Franklin Templeton in 2001 following the acquisition of Fiduciary Trust Company International, where he was the Sales Director responsible for mutual fund development in Europe. Before this Jamie was National Sales Manager for Hill Samuel Asset Management, the asset-management arm of the Lloyds TSB Group. Jamie has over 30 years of industry experience.

When and how did you start your career in the financial industry? Did you have any other vocation?

I started my career in the last century and my first sales role was with Hill Samuel, which was a great introduction to the industry given its broad business activities spanning asset management, banking, and insurance. I also was a keen footballer back then, but sadly not good enough to earn a living from it!

What is your biggest challenge as Deputy CEO – Head of EMEA Region at iM Global Partner?

Simply that not enough people know enough about iM Global Partner, yet. The firm was only established by Philippe Couvrecelle 6 years ago and has quickly grown to around US$35 billion in AUM, which is a great achievement as it has almost doubled since the start of this year (78%). Our value proposition is a bit different insofar as what we are doing is bringing ‘best in class’ or specialist asset managers to the broader market, by acquiring a strategic stake in each Partner’s business. We leave each Partner to continue managing assets in their own unique way, with proven track records and provide distribution and other support functions to help them grow. In this way, our interests are totally aligned.

In your opinion, what are the key drivers for successful fund distribution?

I think this can be summed up in two words; product and service, although I see that’s three words really! A successful asset manager must have products that are distinctive and that deliver the outcomes that clients need, and expect when they invest with you. Active managers must be able to firmly differentiate their investment proposition from passive products.

Service encompasses so many areas but, essentially, it is no longer good enough to operate a ‘one-size-fits-all’ model. Clients today expect us to understand their business and treat them as individuals. A ‘client-centric’ approach is now needed whereby we understand each client’s business model and tailor our service accordingly. Clients have been asking for this, but our industry has always tried to put them into one or two neat channel boxes and then apply that model. Given how data analytics and technology have evolved, the winners going forward will be the firms that really understand their clients and adapt their service model to their individual needs.

What do you think will be the next disruptive element in the asset management industry?

There are a number of elements that will continue to disrupt the industry. For example, many banks and insurers still have large captive fund management businesses and I think some of this could shift towards third-party management as firms concentrate more on their core business. Probably the biggest disruptor will continue to be technology. Think about how we all had to quickly adapt to a new way of working back in March 2020. Some firms handled this better than others, but it is clear that client engagement models have changed and need to evolve. It is no longer optimal to have separated sales and marketing strategies, and the virtual engagement model we have been forced into has shown us there is another way. Going forward I believe we will see the evolution of fully integrated (and segmented) client engagement teams.

It is also not possible to discuss disruption without mentioning blockchain and ‘tokenisation’. This could be revolutionary in bringing down costs and creating easier access to less liquid asset classes for investors, but there are many regulatory hurdles to overcome.

What does your work look like on a daily basis and what are the problems you normally face? How do you stay motivated?

Given that I have only recently joined iM Global Partner, my days at the moment are spent learning as much as possible about the firm and its Partners, and meeting as many people as possible. The biggest problem is that this can really only be done virtually at the moment – apart from in London. I am looking forward to traveling restrictions easing so that I can soon meet colleagues and clients in person. I have not yet been able to meet Philippe in person!

I very much enjoy working in the industry and being involved with growing a business. I have always had strong internal motivation, and this is helped by seeing regular progress towards both short and long-term objectives.

What investment sectors and funds do you think will be of interest to clients in Q3 & Q4 2021?

Broadly speaking I think that we will see strong interest in funds that are comprised of ‘quality’ stocks as opposed to value vs growth. This would be true for all sectors and will give truly active managers a great opportunity to showcase such products. I also think that we will continue to see strong and growing interest in sustainable and thematic products, given what we have experienced in recent times and what we see happening around the world. As an example, we are seeing strong interest in our Oyster Sustainable Europe Fund throughout the region.

Due to the pandemic situation and the economic uncertainty, what are your perspectives regarding the future of the economy?

Even though some countries and some activities are still suffering from sanitary issues, the global economy seems to be on a strong growth path and corporate profits are rebounding very strongly. With the exception of China, the main central banks continue to be in a supportive mode. Of course, uncertainty also creates opportunity, as we have seen recently with the Healthcare and Technology sectors, and I think this underlines the importance of active management during uncertain times.

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Jamie Hammond, Deputy CEO – Head of EMEA Region at iM Global Partner – Sales Manager of the Month