Many fund managers want to become the next Coronation. It might not have the total profits of unlisted Allan Gray, which also has a successful platform business and even an institutional umbrella fund. But Allan Gray has lived up to its marketing theme of getting rich slowly. It is a similar size to Coronation, even though it has been around almost 20 years longer and it took almost 25 years to launch unit trusts, while Coronation took barely three years. Coronation was formed by a breakaway team from Syfrets Managed Assets, led by Leon Campher and Tony Gibson. They left primarily because they were refused a suitable profit-share programme. They were backed by David Barnes and Gavan Ryan’s Coronation Capital, which otherwise ran a rather untransparent group of financial services products. They had a excellent reputation as short-term traders, which was really never a good fit with the fund management arm. The fund manager did not choose to be listed separately — very few do, as they...

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