They say it takes opposing views to make a market. But it is unusual that Nedgroup (Nedbank’s asset manager) is launching a global emerging markets (GEM) fund just at a time when its former parent, Old Mutual, is closing down its equivalent fund. Old Mutual wasn’t getting the assets it needed to make the business pay. The overheads of an active emerging markets fund are high. Fund managers can’t rely on published information and therefore have to travel extensively, from Shanghai to São Paulo and Mumbai to Mexico City to meet management and, often literally, kick the tyres. At least that is the template established by emerging markets pioneer Mark Mobius, formerly of Franklin Templeton. Nedgroup’s business model is to outsource fund management and share fees with the sub-adviser. It has chosen NS Partners to run its GEM Equity Fund. The "NS" is an oblique reference to the team’s origins as a part of New Star, a UK fund manager which rose impressively, making its staff rich on listin...

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