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French boutique Mandarine hands new hire microcap fund

French boutique Mandarine hands new hire microcap fund

French firm Mandarine Gestion has restructured one of its small and mid-cap funds and handed it to a new recruit, the company has announced.

The Mandarine PME, managed by Diane Bruno, was changed into a fund specialising in micro caps on the September 1.

Sébastien Lagarde is the new lead manager of the fund which is now called Mandarine Europe Microcap. Lagarde joined Mandarine in June 2015 from AXA IM where he had been working since 1999 as a portfolio manager.

The equity fund specialises in European listed companies with a market capitalisation of less than about €800 million. This is while its new benchmark is the MSCI Europe NR Microcap.

Currently the fund is only available for sale in France, but a spokesperson for the asset manager said that the Mandarine Europe Microcap may be registered for sale across Europe in the future.

Commenting on the change, Lagarde said: ‘Contrary to popular belief, the great economic diversity of micro-cap stocks means that they offer low correlation which makes a less volatile investment theme than large caps.'

'Neglected by analysts and less dependent on macroeconomic conditions, this universe of European microcaps boasts many market inefficiencies, providing a fertile ground for stock-picking.’

During his tenure with AXA IM, Lagarde launched and managed the AXA WF Framlington Europe Microcap, theAXA WF Framlington Junior Energy and the AXA WF Framlington Hybrid Resources funds.

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