No progress on fund manager diversity, with proportion of retail funds managed by women stuck at 7%

03 June 2015

In its third annual analysis of the proportion of UK retail investment funds, such as OEICs and unit trusts, managed by women, leading investment group Tilney Bestinvest has found no progress in improving industry diversity over the last year. The firm estimates that just 7% of funds are managed or co-managed by women, a figure unchanged from the previous year.

Tilney Bestinvest’s assessment is based on analysis of the five largest Investment Association sectors. The research shows that the percentage of funds currently run by women range from just 5% in the UK Equity Income sector to 9% in the Mixed Investment 40-85% sector. The remaining three Investment Association sectors under scrutiny revealed an estimated 8% of women fund managers in the Corporate Bond sector; 7% in the UK All Companies sector and 7% in the Global sector.

The figures reflect a large disparity compared to the number of women represented in senior positions in other professions, as well as the proportion of women represented on the Boards of FTSE 100 companies, where women currently account for 23.5% of positions.

Jason Hollands, Managing Director at Tilney Bestinvest commented: “Despite a handful of high-profile women in senior management positions within the industry, front-office positions continue to be male-dominated and dramatically out of line with the proportion of women graduating from universities.  Improving the diversity of the industry so that it draws on the widest pool of talent, requires firms to address this issue when seeking to attract graduate trainees into the industry.”

Helena Morrissey CBE, CEO of Newton Investment Management and Chair of the Investment Association commented: “The lack of progress is very disappointing but sadly not a surprise. As an industry we need to do a better job explaining what we actually do, including our social purpose, so that new ‘types’ of people might be attracted to fund management. Cognitive diversity is such an important aspect of building great teams – including teams of investors. Gender diversity is a key place to start building those broader perspectives since men and women do think and behave differently - we complement each other. It’s time to redouble our efforts to do something about this.”

Role models – leading women fund managers

Despite the gross under representation of women in the fund management industry, the profession nevertheless has some strong role models according to Tilney Bestinvest.

Amongst those highlighted for their strong career track records are Paola Binns (Royal London Sterling Credit), Lesley Duncan (Standard Life UK Ethical), Julie Dean (TM Sanditon UK), Christine Johnson (Old Mutual Corporate Bond), Margaret Lawson (SVM UK Growth), Sue Round (Ecclesiastical Amity UK), Audrey Ryan (Kames Ethical Equity), and Catherine Stanley (F&C UK Smaller Companies, F&C Responsible UK Income, F&C Responsible UK Equity Growth).

Up and coming names to watch include Anna Lunden (Montanaro European Mid-Cap), Irina Miklavchich (Threadneedle Global Emerging Markets Equity), Malika Gulabani (F&C Global Bond) and Sophie Bosch (JP Morgan).

- ENDS -

Important information:

The value of investments, and the income derived from them, can go down as well as up and you can get back less than you originally invested. This press release does not constitute personal advice. If you are in doubt as to the suitability of an investment please contact one of our advisers. Past performance is not a guide to future performance.

Funds may carry different levels of risk depending on the industry sector(s) in which they invest. You should ensure that you understand the nature of any fund before you invest in it.


Press contacts:

Roisin Hynes

0207 189 2403
07966 843 699

Matthew Gray
020 7189 2492

About Tilney Bestinvest

Tilney Bestinvest is a leading investment and financial planning firm that builds on a heritage of more than 150 years. We look after more than £9 billion of assets on our clients’ behalf and pride ourselves on offering the very highest levels of professional client service with transparent, competitive pricing across our entire range of solutions.

We offer a range of services for clients whether they would like to have their investments managed by us, require the support of a highly qualified adviser, prefer to make their own investment decisions or want to take more than one approach. We also have a nationwide team of expert financial planners to help clients with all aspects of financial planning, including retirement planning.

We have won numerous awards including UK Wealth Manager of the Year, Low-cost SIPP Provider of the Year and Self-select ISA Provider of the Year 2013, as voted by readers of the Financial Times and Investors Chronicle. We are pleased that our greatest source of new business is personal referrals from existing clients.

Headquartered in Mayfair, London, Tilney Bestinvest employs almost 400 staff across our network of offices, giving us full UK coverage, and we combine our award-winning research and expertise to provide a personalised service to clients whatever their investment needs.

The Tilney Bestinvest Group of Companies comprises the firms Bestinvest (Brokers) Ltd (Reg. No. 2830297), Tilney Investment Management (Reg. No. 02010520), Bestinvest (Consultants) Ltd (Reg. No. 1550116) and HW Financial Services Ltd (Reg. No. 02030706) all of which are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered office: 6 Chesterfield Gardens, Mayfair, W1J 5BQ.

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About Tilney

Tilney is a leading investment and financial planning group that builds on a heritage of more than 180 years.  Our clients are private investors, charities and professional intermediaries who trust us with over £23 billion of their assets. We offer a range of services including financial planning, investment management and advice and, through our Bestinvest service, a leading online platform for those who prefer to manage their own investments.

We have won numerous awards. Tilney has been awarded Best Conventional Advisory Service at the 2018 City of London Wealth Management Awards, Best Advisory Service in the 2015 City of London Wealth Management Awards; Investment Award – Cautious category in the Private Asset Management Awards; and Stockbroker of the Year, Execution-only Stockbroker of the Year and Self-select ISA Provider of the Year 2015, as voted by readers of the Financial Times and Investors Chronicle. Bestinvest was voted Best SIPP Provider and Best Fund Platform at the 2017 City of London Wealth Management Awards, Best Direct SIPP Provider at the Awards 2017, Best Stocks & Shares ISA Provider at the 2017 Shares Awards, as well as Best Self Select ISA Provider, Best Online/Execution-only Stockbroker and Best Investment Platform 2017 at the FT and Investors Chronicle Investment and Wealth Management Awards, as voted by readers of the FT and Investors Chronicle.

Headquartered in Mayfair, London, the Tilney Group employs over 1,000 staff across our network of 30 offices, enabling us to support clients with a local service throughout the UK.