The former AllianceBernstein growth Australian equities team will become a Challenger boutique, as tweeted by I&T News in May, leading to the departure of former Aussie equities chief Peter Greentree after a forgettable couple of years.

The former AllianceBernstein growth equities team, headed by Johan Carlberg and including Andrew Martin, Stephane Andre and Bruce Smith, will become known as Alphinity Investment Management.

During its tenure at AllianceBernstein between December 2004 and March 2010, Carlberg’s team added 2.8 per cent of alpha to its ASX 200 benchmark. Challenger will take a minority equity stake in the Alphinity bnusiness, in return for providing it subsidised administration and distribution services.

The team will take over management of three Challenger funds – Australian Shares, Australian Shares Select and Australian Shares Socially Responsible, which together are understood to have about $200 million of funds under management remaining.

Support for the funds had been dwindling over the last couple of years, thanks to staff turnover and some terrible performance during the global financial crisis. Famously, Greentree and his team were the largest institutional shareholders in ABC Learning, although performance had been on the improve over the past year.

A Challenger spokesperson said Greentree and his three team members had made a mutual agreement with Challenger to depart the business. The Challenger brand will remain on its Australian small-caps, microcaps and real estate funds.

The income team under Neil Margolis was set up by Challenger in another boutique, Merlon Capital Partners, in May. A spokesperson said its FUM had already increased 20 per cent following the move.

Alphinity will commence managing the funds bequeathed to it on July 12, while Carlberg himself will join in August. Greentree and his team will be in charge of the three funds until the end of this week, and will then remain for a few days to assist the transition to Alphinity.

The AllianceBernstein-to-Challenger story is just one of the stories broken by I&T News on Twitter. To keep track of our regular tweets, go to




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