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Trimark loses another fund manager to Edgepoint

Ted Chisholm, who left Trimark for EdgePoint

Investment fund company Invesco Trimark Ltd. is losing yet another portfolio manager to rival boutique firm EdgePoint Wealth Management.

Ted Chisholm, who has been lead manager of the $175-million Trimark Canadian Small Companies fund since 2007, will join EdgePoint on May 5.

Jason Whiting, who runs the $27-million Trimark North American Endeavour Class, will take over the lead on the Canadian small-cap fund and run both, an Invesco Trimark spokesperson confirmed Thursday. "The investment objectives and strategies…will remain unchanged."

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Mr. Chisholm's fund has posted an annualized 8.3-per-cent return for three years ending Feb. 28 compared with 7.5 per cent for the S&P/TSX Completion Total Return Index.

Invesco Trimark had been experiencing a flood of monthly net redemptions in recent years, partly because of the departure of key managers. Last fall, it cancelled its membership with Investment Funds Institute of Canada (IFIC) and stopped supplying sales data to the industry group.

Mr. Chisholm was "certainly a significant part of the small-cap team," said Dan Hallett, a fund analyst and director of asset management with HighView Financial Group. "It may well signal that there continues to be some organizational challenges there."

Mr. Hallett, who had the Trimark Canadian Small Companies fund on his recommended list of funds, said this offering is now under review.

"Invesco Trimark has been dealing with challenges for some time," he said. "I am not sure those issues ever fully went away."

EdgePoint, which now has $2.2-billion in assets, is part of publicly listed Cymbria Corp. , which was co-founded in 2008 by Tye Bousada and Geoff MacDonald, who are former Invesco Trimark managers. Patrick Farmer, now chief executive officer of EdgePoint, was formerly a chief investment officer at Invesco Trimark.

Robert Krembil, another Edgepoint co-founder, helped start up Trimark Financial Corp., a fund company bought in 2000 by Invesco Trimark's U.S.-based parent.

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Mr. Chisholm worked at Trimark Finanical for nearly a decade in the 1990s on the sales side of the fund business before leaving. He returned in 2003 to become an analyst at Invesco Trimark before taking over as a lead manager on the small-cap fund.

He will not start a new fund at EdgePoint, but become part of the team running the firm's four existing global and Canadian stock and balanced funds.

"We manage money, as opposed to launching new products," Mr. Bousada said in an interview on Thursday. "We are into getting the kids educated and the retirement business [through investment funds]"

Richard Jenkins, another former Invesco Trimark manager, left in early 2008 to join Black Creek Investment Management Inc., which now runs money for CI Financial Corp.

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