Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Why is Nigel Legge leaving Liontrust Asset Management?

Nigel Legge has stepped down as the chief executive of Liontrust Asset Management. John Ions has replaced him. Nigel is staying at the firm as a consultant until August this year, then he'll be gone forever.

So why is he leaving? Two words: Vinay Abrol - Liontrust's chief operating officer. That's more than two words. I meant the name, 'Vinay Abrol'.

I have been speaking to Mr Legge. This is what he told me: 'Mikey, Vinay Abrol - (Nigel, you need to know that Vinay is a personal friend of mine.) No, I'm not going to say anything derogatory about him. I respect Vinay, Mike. I just can't get on with him. (What's the problem?) You know I have no knowledge of financial shamanism, don't you? I'm a classic cold earth wanderer. I wouldn't know one end of a chakra from the other. (Chakras are wheels, Nigel. Mystic wheels. They don't have ends.) Well, there you go. I'm completely in the dark. (At least you're man enough to admit it. A lot of finance types - in this new era of mystical capitalism - won't fess up to their lack of knowledge. Others just don't give a shit. But they're vulgarians. I don't have any time for them.) Vinay. (What about Vinay?) Vinay is a very experienced financial shaman and a veteran of the astral desert. He's almost in your league. (Almost.) Yeah. But he can be quite arrogant. (Example, please.) Okay. Last month, he came back from a particularly intense session on the astral plane - or so he reckoned. He had been away for days. Days! Then what? Does he get down to work? No. No, not him. Mike, we had to listen to his bragging for hours! The things he saw. The dead financiers he had so many mind-blowing conversations with. The love he felt. And this is a regular occurrence with him. He's always off on the plane. So that's why I'm leaving. Because if I don't leave, I swear to Christ I'll swing for him. (Touch of jealousy there, I think. You remind me of Mark Oestergaard. He left London & Capital because the mystical love his co-workers had in their hearts was all too much for him.) I'm not jealous, Mr Fowke. I - (Mr Fowke? Always a bad sign.) Mikey, come on, man. Try and be a bit understanding. (Look, Nige, all I can say to you is: Get out in the desert! Experience it for yourself! Live large! Take it to the limit!) That's not me, Mike. (As Uncle Monty said: Are you a sponge or a stone?) I voted Conservative. (Well, I don't know how to help you then. If you won't help yourself, there's nothing I can do.) Oh. (How is Ross Hollyman, by the way?) That charlatan?! Don't get me started on Ross Hollyman. Even Vinay sees through him.'

Of course Vinay sees through Ross. Vinay is a genuine shaman. We all know what Ross is.