Hartford Investment Management, which has approximately $25 billion in assets under management, is looking to gain new business from large U.K. institutional clients by marketing fixed-income products to pension funds. HIMCO has recently approached Mercer Investment Consulting, Watson Wyatt "and half a dozen other major consultants that are the gate keepers for pension funds in the U.K.," said Ronan Burke, director of institutional sales in Hartford, Conn.
HIMCO is seeing increasing demand for credit and corporate bond products within the U.K. market because pension funds are looking for better ways to match their liabilities, Burke continued. "It's not just an increasing demand for fixed-income products, but for specialist fixed-income products," he explained.
As a result, HIMCO has hired Alison Murdoch as a credit analyst and Ray Uy as an international trader to strengthen the two-strong international team headed by Robert McHenry. Murdoch was previously at Abbey National Asset Managers in Glasgow, Scotland, as a senior credit fund manager. Meanwhile, Uy was an associate at Mackay Shields' global fixed-income group in New York. They both report to McHenry.
The development of new funds to be launched in the not too distant future is already in progress, Burke noted, declining further comment. The manager is not planning to set up an office in the U.K. and will run the European effort from its Hartford headquarters.