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Takarada joins NAM as senior portfolio manager

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Shinsuke Takarada has joined RWC Partners’ joint venture partner Nissay Asset Management (NAM) in Tokyo as a Senior Portfolio Manager specifically to work on the corporate engagement focussed RWC Nissay Japan Focus Fund and Dublin-domiciled Japanese Stewardship Fund.

Before joining NAM, Shinsuke worked at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities specialising in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues. Prior to that, he worked for Dainippon Printing as a consultant on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) management. His MBA at Aoyama Gakuin University focused on corporate governance, including a research paper on the impact of ESG factors on the cost of capital.
 
The Luxembourg SICAV, RWC Nissay Japan Focus Fund, has had inflows of USD220m since its inception in March 2015.  It has shareholder engagement at its core and closely replicates the strategy of the Japanese Stewardship Fund launched in 2005. Since 2005 the Japanese Stewardship Fund has seen very strong performance* of 50% over the TOPIX since its inception and more recently returned 31 per cent in 2015 demonstrating that opportunities to generate returns are still very much on offer in Japan.
  
Portfolio Manager, Yasuaki Kinoshita says: “I am pleased to have Shinsuke join the team. His experience in ESG and CSR is very well aligned with our existing corporate engagement approach. The strategy focusses on quality companies that have room for significant further improvement in areas ranging from balance sheet management to corporate communication and, in some cases, the disposal of underperforming subsidiaries. I am confident that Shinsuke will help us to continue to uncover investment opportunities.”
 
James Tollemache, Head of Business Development at RWC Partners, says: “The RWC Nissay Japan Focus Fund is very unusual given its concentrated nature and focus on engagement to create shareholder value. Although the strategy has been managed in this form since 2005, the opportunity set has been significantly enhanced by the creation of the Japanese Stewardship Code, the launch of the JPX-Nikkei 400 Index and the Japanese Corporate Governance Code. We are in a strong position to offer our clients a strategy that takes advantage of opportunities in the changing Japanese corporate landscape and having Shinsuke join yet further enhances the already deep experience the team have.
 
“We are not interested in becoming the largest Japanese equity fund. With the sizeable outperformance the team has generated over the past ten years, as well as the continued demand we are seeing, at some point we will need to consider soft closing the UCITS fund.”

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