First departure after Standard Life/Aberdeen merger announced

DepatureStandard Life Investments (SLI) head of equities, David Cumming, is the first senior figure to leave the firm since it was announced that the firm was to merge with Aberdeen Asset Management.

SLI said in a statement that Cumming was leaving to “pursue other interests”.

Cumming joined SLI in 1998, becoming UK head of equities in 2000 and executive director in 2004. Stan Person, head of European equities, will become acting head of equities, while Andrew Millington, director of equity research, will be acting head of UK equities.

SLI’s chief investment officer Rod Paris said: “I would also like to thank David for his support and contribution to the business over the many years we have worked together, and wish him the very best.”

Randal Goldsmith, senior analyst at fund research firm Morningstar said:  “The news of Cumming’s departure follows closely on the heels of the announcement that SLI is acquiring Aberdeen Asset Management, though it is not clear that there is any relationship between that deal and today’s news.”

He added that Cumming’s departure should not have any impact on how his firm rates SLI’s six equity funds that carry a Morningstar analyst rating.

The Standard Life merger with Aberdeen will create an £11 billion (€12.7 billion) entity and be the second largest asset manager in Europe by assets under management.

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