First State boosts European distribution with hire from State Street

First State Investments has appointed Kanesh Lakhani to managing director in charge of distribution across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, a new role to help the asset manager increase its distribution on the Continent.

Lakhani joins at the end of May, joining an existing team focused on European distribution, segmented by countries.

First State makes its retail funds available, structured as open ended investment companies (Oeics), typically via platforms and intermediary networks.

Eva von Sydow looks after French and Swedish distribution based out of Paris; Marc Bishop oversees sales into Germany and Austria from his base in London; and Graham Fox, the group’s head of wholesale distribution, looks after Switzerland.

First State said Lakhani brings more than 25 years’ experience in the investment industry, including at State Street since 1997, where he rose to be senior managing director of its UK business.

Before State Street, Lakhani was director of sales and marketing at Wells Fargo and, after its acquisition by Barclays Global Investors, director of UK business development.

Lakhani will report to Gary Withers, regional managing director for EMEA at First State Investments.

Withers said: “Kanesh is a very experienced professional and he will lead our client servicing and sales teams and oversee the future development of our institutional and consultant relationships.”

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