A former senior portfolio manager at Investors Mutual, the head of acquisitions for retail property giant Centro, and a senior marketer at UBS Global Asset Management will launch an Australian equities boutique called Concise Asset Management, with venture capital backing.

Andrew King (ex-Investors Mutual) and David Grace (ex-Centro) will manage Concise’s flagship fund, an Australian mid-cap product, while UBS GAM marketer David Parr is departing this week to run the new business. All three are old schoolmates from De La Salle College in Melbourne, where the firm will be based. Concise will be backed by venture capital firm CVC Limited, a debutante investor in funds management. An Australian mid-cap specialist for over a decade, King said that Centro’s Grace was integral to the business because listed property trusts directly made up about 13 per cent of the ASX 200 (ex-ASX 50) mid-cap universe. “;Looking at what shopping centres to buy for Centro, he also had to become an expert on things like consumer staples and durables because they are your anchor tenants,”; King said. He added that Parr, a former InvestorWeb colleague, would handle all the compliance, risk management, marketing and client liaison not related to investments, allowing he and Grace to focus solely on stockpicking and management of the 30-40 stock portfolio. King said Concise hoped to fill the demand created by most Australian mid-cap funds being near capacity – including that of Paradice Investments, where King has been consulting since leaving Investors Mutual last year. King described the deal with CVC as “;similar to the Treasury Group model”;, stressing that Concise would be its own responsible entity. “;Sure there’s some upfront costs to being your own RE, but in setting this up we’ve really looked 15 or 20 years ahead – we want to be able to control our own destiny.”; Concise is in the process of applying for its AFSL licence and shortlisting backoffice providers. King said a straight ASX 200 fund was planned once the business was established.

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