Aston Hill Announces Corporate Reorganization And Portfolio Management Changes

TORONTO, June 30, 2015 /CNW/ - Aston Hill Financial Inc. ("Aston Hill" or the "Company") (TSX: AHF) is pleased to announce a number of new corporate initiatives effective immediately.

Peter Anderson Takes Interim Senior Executive Role

Aston Hill is pleased to announce that Peter Anderson has been appointed to an interim senior executive role within the Company effective August 1st, 2015.  Further details of Mr. Anderson's position within the Company will be disclosed once appropriate regulatory approval has been received. Mr. Anderson was a senior executive at CI Financial Inc. for 15 years serving as Chief Investment Officer and Head of Institutional Sales until 2012, prior thereto as President and Chief Executive Officer of CI Investments. He was part of the team instrumental in building CI into a leading global investment firm. Mr. Anderson's global investment experience and expertise complements the Company in areas of corporate strategy, distribution development and risk management. Mr. Anderson was first appointed to the Aston Hill Board of Directors in November 2014.

"Peter has a wealth of industry knowledge and a deep understanding of the Canadian investment industry, especially the opportunities and challenges inherent within the mutual fund segment," said Ben Cheng, President and Chief Investment Officer. "His strong strategic and leadership skills and his proven experience are an exciting fit for Aston Hill's goal of becoming a leading independent asset management firm. His willingness to take on a senior executive role illustrates his appreciation of the opportunity Aston Hill has to make an impact within this industry."

Cost Cutting Initiatives in Calgary

Aston Hill remains focused on realizing efficiencies through managing its cost structure and will be taking a number of cost cutting measures. To that point, the Company expects that it will consolidate certain corporate functions currently being run from the Calgary, AB office to the Toronto, ON office. These functions include corporate finance, accounting and human resources. The expected consolidation is driven by potential cost savings of approximately $2 million per year.

Portfolio Management Changes

Four of Aston Hill's open end mutual funds will be undergoing portfolio management changes effective immediately:

  • Aston Hill Capital Growth Fund: Portfolio management responsibilities will be assumed by John Kim. Mr. Kim will continue the Fund's investment approach, which is that of having a committed focus on managing downside risk to generate favourable risk-adjusted returns over the long term. Mr. Kim joined Aston Hill in April 2014, bringing with him almost twenty years of experience in the investment industry managing both Canadian and international equities. Mr. Kim is also the portfolio manager of the Aston Hill Canadian Total Return Fund, among others, which is managed with a philosophy very similar to the Aston Hill Capital Growth Fund.
  • Aston Hill Global Growth & Income Fund: Portfolio management responsibilities will be assumed by the Fund's co-manager, Vivian Lo, Vice President and Portfolio Manager. As co-manager, Ms. Lo has been managing the Fund since its inception in September 2012. Ms. Lo will continue to dynamically allocate the Fund's assets between equities, fixed income and cash, and aims to provide investors with meaningful diversification away from the Canadian capital markets. Ms. Lo joined Aston Hill in 2007 and has approximately twelve years of investment experience. Ms. Lo has extensive experience in managing balanced fund mandates, which includes serving as co-manager of the Aston Hill Growth & Income Fund since November 2010.
  • Aston Hill Opportunities Fund: Portfolio management responsibilities of the hedge fund will be assumed by Ben Cheng* and John Kim. Both managers have extensive experience running alternative investments including both long/short equity and market neutral strategies.
  • Aston Hill U.S. Growth Fund: Portfolio management responsibilities will be assumed by John Kim and Darren Cabral†, President of Aston Hill Capital Markets Inc. Mr. Cabral joined Aston Hill in August 2013 via the acquisition of Connor, Clark & Lunn Capital Markets. As a portfolio manager with Aston Hill Capital Markets, Mr. Cabral has been instrumental in building out the portfolio management team's use of options within the funds.

In conjunction with the portfolio management changes, Aston Hill announces the resignation of Co-Chief Investment Officer Jeffrey Burchell. Mr. Burchell was appointed to Co-CIO in May 2013, sharing the responsibilities with Ben Cheng. Effective immediately, Mr. Cheng will re-establish his role as sole Chief Investment Officer.

Mr. Burchell joined Aston Hill in November 2010 to help bring alternative investing strategies to the retail mutual fund segment through Aston Hill's line-up of Liquid Alternative mutual funds. After almost five years, Mr. Burchell has made the decision to return to the alternative investment arena to manage an absolute return strategy targeted at institutional and high net worth investors for Gluskin Sheff + Associates Inc. "I've had the pleasure of working closely with Jeff since he first joined the firm and he will be missed by our team," said Mr. Cheng. "We wish him all the best in his new role."

Aston Hill invites investment advisors to join a conference call hosted by Ben Cheng and Peter Anderson  on Thursday, July 2 at 10:00 AM EST. Portfolio managers John Kim and Vivian Lo will also host a conference call for investment advisors on Monday, July 6 at 4:10PM EST.  Details for the two conference calls will be circulated via Aston Hill's Sales and Marketing Department. Please contact your wholesaler directly with any questions or to receive the dial-in details.

About Aston Hill

Aston Hill Financial Inc. (TSX: AHF) is a diversified asset management company with a suite of retail mutual funds, closed end funds, private equity funds, hedge funds and segregated institutional funds. Aston Hill Financial has offices in Calgary, Toronto and Halifax.

*Ben Cheng does not currently act as portfolio manager for any Aston Hill mutual funds.
†pending regulatory approval.

SOURCE Aston Hill Financial Inc.

For further information: Please contact your financial advisor, call Aston Hill's Sales and Marketing support line at 416-583-2300 (toll-free at 1-800-513-3868), or visit our website at www.astonhill.ca.

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