'Retired' Mobius unveils plans to launch new EM firm

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'Retired' Mobius unveils plans to launch new EM firm

Mark Mobius, the 81-year-old star fund manager who retired from Franklin Templeton last month, has told a prominent Indian newspaper that he will be launching a new fund management firm that will invest in emerging and frontier market companies “focused on environmental, social and governance issues”.

Mobius, who is known for having been an early and successful advocate of emerging market investing, has joined the investment panel of Equanimity Investments, a Mumbai, India-based firm founded by Rajesh Sehgal, who is its managing partner, and a former senior executive director and head of private equity for South Asia, the Middle East and Africa with the Templeton Asset Management Group.

The interview with Mobius, which was posted on the website of the Mint newspaper, www.livemint.com,  on 20 February, notes that the “investment guru” will return to managing emerging markets, though “this time with governance in focus”.

The fund Mobius plans to run will be open-ended and long-only, according to the report.

The article quotes Mobius as saying, at a media briefing in Mumbai, that he has “no plan to retire”, and that his new company is currently applying for licences in London and Luxembourg.

“The fund (will invest in) not only companies that are great in ESG, but also those that have the potential to improve their governance, and environment and social,” Mobius went on, according to the article.

It said the fund manager was in Mumbai to announce his new involvement with Equanimity, which it described as “a sector-agnostic fund which uses technology to ensure scalability and sustainability of their business models”.

Mobius, the article added, perhaps not surprisingly given his new arrangement, said the Indian market looked “attractive” at the moment, and that among his favourite bets there were those Indian banks that are able to embrace the new technology.

This article was first published on International Investment, the sister publication of InvestmentEurope.