Disgraced fund boss Neil Woodford FINALLY says he is ‘very sorry for what I did wrong’ but that he doesn’t want to ‘hide away and beat myself up’
- Neil Woodford’s £3 billion Equity Income fund collapsed in October 2019
- Savers had been locked out of their investments as increasing numbers attempted to pull their money out
- He is now planning to create a new fund called Woodford Capital Management
Disgraced fund manager Neil Woodford has apologised for the collapse of his investment fund – but said he doesn’t want to ‘hide away and beat myself up’ about it.
In his first interview since the collapse of the fund in October 2019, the fallen star of the fund management industry said he is planning a new venture despite the financial scars left on small investors. Many complain they invested heavily in Mr Woodford’s funds and some even lost most of their savings.
Woodford, who has repeatedly declined the opportunity to say sorry, this weekend broke his silence as he said he planned to launch a new fund – based in Jersey. Speaking publically for the first time, he said he was ‘very sorry for what I did wrong’ and suggested two years was long enough to atone for the debacle.
Disgraced fund manager Neil Woodford (pictured) has apologised for the collapse of his investment fund – but said he doesn’t want to ‘hide away and beat myself up’ about it
In an interview with the Sunday Telegraph, he said: ‘I don’t want to, for the rest of my life, hide away and beat myself up about things from the best part of two years ago.’
He said he planned to create a new fund called Woodford Capital Management Partners but vowed not to repeat his mistake of investing ordinary investors’ money in start-ups that might take years to pay out. Woodford’s fund was closed after investors tried to withdraw cash and many were cut off from their own money for months.
He said he was ‘furious’ at the administrator of Woodford Investment Management, Link Fund Solutions, for some of the failures that led to the collapse.
During the interview, Mr Woodford ‘broke into tears’ as he defended the firm’s culture and denied claims that ‘machismo and yes men’ damaged the fund.
In his first interview since the collapse of the fund in October 2019, the fallen star of the fund management industry said he is planning a new venture despite the financial scars left on small investors
‘When people say that sort of stuff about the organisation, about the culture, about the lies that have been told about the business and the people in it, that really, really hurts, because it wasn’t like that at all. It was an amazing place, with amazing people, who fought to the end. I’m very sorry for what I did wrong. What I was responsible for was two years of underperformance – I was the fund manager, the investment strategy was mine, I owned it, and it delivered a period of underperformance.’
He blamed Link Fund Solutions for the decision to close Woodford Investment Management and insisted the situation would have improved had it stayed open.
‘I can’t be sorry for the things I didn’t do. I didn’t make the decision to suspend the fund, I didn’t make the decision to liquidate the fund. As history will now show, those decisions were incredibly damaging to investors, and they were not mine. They were Link’s decisions.’
Out-of-pocket investors are now discussing the handling of the fund and its closure with the courts.
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