Ryan Hughes, head of active portfolios at investment platform AJ Bell, said the surprise departure of Snowden and Ennett was a ‘serious blow’ to the asset manager and that it had ‘ripped the heart out of the experienced team’, leaving Kames’ fixed income capability significantly weakened.
‘We removed the Kames fixed interest funds from our favourite funds list last year amid concerns over the team and sadly we have been vindicated,’ he added.
Kames chief investment officer Stephen Jones said the company had always adopted a ‘team-based approach’ and that ‘we remain committed to the market’.
‘We operate in a very competitive market, one where we have seen a good degree of change recently across the whole sector,’ he added.
‘We are not immune, and whilst it is always disappointing to lose members of the team, it allows us to promote from within and refresh and recruit where appropriate and necessary.’
Rory Sandilands will become co-manager alongside existing manager Colin Finlayson on the Kames Absolute Return Bond fund, while Finlayson also becomes co-manager on the Kames Strategic Bond and Kames Strategic Global Bond funds with current co-manager Alex Pelteshki.
Jack Holmes and Mark Benbow will co-manage the Kames High Yield Bond and Kames Short Dated High Yield Bond funds, while Benbow will also join Holmes as co-manager on the Kames High Yield Global Bond fund.
Adrian Hull, previously the co-head of fixed income alongside Snowden, will take sole responsibility for the fixed income team.
All of this follows a tough year for the business that has seen its profit nearly halve to £9.9 million from £19 million in 2017, while assets under management fell by 10.6% to £43.4 billion, which was attributed to the loss of mandates.