Mercer has named Michael Armitage in the newly-created position of head of investment consulting in Australia.
Based in Melbourne, Armitage would also be “working closely” with the NZ investment team, a Mercer spokesperson said.
Armitage, previously head of fund advisory for actuarial consulting firm Milliman in Australia, has 15 years experience in “investment strategy research, portfolio management, institutional investment and asset management product” across various global locations.
Milliman principal’s Jeff Gebler and Victor Huang head up the group’s recently-restructured investment division following Armitage’s exit.
Simon Eagleton, Mercer Pacific head of institutional wealth, said the appointment would help the firm “proactively grow its consulting business”.
Meanwhile, Mercer NZ has filled the gap left by the departure last of year of portfolio manager, Chris Di Leva, for Harbour Asset Management.
Based in Wellington, James Wilson, joins Mercer as assistant portfolio manager following a year at Treasury NZ analysing “various work streams” at Crown-owned companies and financial institutions.
Prior to his Treasury role, Wilson – a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) – spent eight years offshore, primarily as a senior investment fund analyst with HSBC in London.
Wilson will be “looking after the Mercer Funds in New Zealand”, the statement says, working alongside portfolio manager, Robert Kavanagh, Russell Garrett, head of institutional wealth and CIO, Philip Houghton-Brown.
Mercer NZ also recent graduate, Joseph Foster, as an investment analyst.
Last week the Auckland-based JMI Wealth also lured a senior financial adviser across from an AMP-owned business.
Lynette Ball joins JMI Wealth after an almost 10-year career with the AMP-owned investment advisory business, Spicers (now folded into AdviceFirst).
AMP’s NZ wealth business is under a cloud after the group announced a delay on an IPO originally slated for this year.
Prior to Spicers, Ball served almost eight years as an investment adviser with ASB following six years as a wealth adviser in South Africa.
JMI Wealth hired former ANZ private bank adviser, to the newly-created role of head of advice in 2017.
Formerly known as JMIS, JMI Wealth adopted the new name last year to make it “clearer that we’re a wealth management business”, director, Andrew Kelleher, said at the time.
The group, which took over the-then $600 million Sovereign Select Wealth discretionary investment management service (DIMS) operation in 2015, now manages over $2 billion across its three business strands covering financial advice, DIMS and a retail funds range (Clarity).
JMI Wealth is a subsidiary of Investment Services Group, which also includes Devon Funds Management in its stable of assets. Devon founder, Paul Glass, owns almost half of Investment Services group via the Investment Hub Trustees vehicle.