Invesco axes boss of Japanese funds in big shake-up in the wake of Woodford's downfall

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Invesco is axeing veteran fund manager Paul Chesson in a big shake-up in the wake of Neil Woodford’s downfall.

Chesson is head of Japanese equities at the firm, which plans to hand management of his two funds to a team in Tokyo by August. 

The decision comes as part of a root-and-branch review of the Henley-based business to slash costs as its funds underperform. Invesco said Chesson was leaving ‘by mutual consent’.

Invesco has felt the heat since the downfall of its former hotshot manager Woodford last year

Invesco has felt the heat since the downfall of its former hotshot manager Woodford last year.

Woodford left Invesco in 2013 to set up his own funds but his big bets on risky, hard-to-trade stocks forced the closure of his company last year.

Woodford’s protege Mark Barnett ran a fund at Invesco that had similar investments, meaning Barnett’s fund was also hit. Barnett left Invesco in May.

Invesco has had some of the worst performing equity funds of the past two years. Chesson’s £213million Japan fund is down 6 per cent this year.

Invesco’s chief investment officer Stephanie Butcher has led the restructuring, handing control of funds to new managers to boost performance.

She said: ‘Paul has been a longstanding and highly respected member of the team and I would like to thank him for his contribution and wish him the very best for the future.’