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Ruffer profits bounce back as client funds climb

Ruffer profits bounce back as client funds climb

Operating profit at Ruffer climbed 6.1% over the year to the end of March to reach a total £129 million, bouncing back from a small dip in the prior year, as client funds rose from £17.7 billion to £19 billion.

In its annual report filed at Companies House, the company said that it had distributed £106.2 million to the firm’s members over the year, up from £101.7 million in 2016. The highest paid member received £18.1 million in the period, unchanged on the year before.  

Turnover rose 8% in the year, from £162.6 million to £175 million. The company declined to comment.

Overall staffing costs rose from £23.6 million to £26 million as the firm increased headcount from 227 to 241, while the number of members rose from 51 to 54.

The increase was attributable to the addition of 14 investment staff over the year, while the number of administrative employees fell.

‘This was in line with anticipated hires for additional resource requirements across the business,’ the company said, adding that its assessment of prospects remained ‘favourable’.  

The largest single-line step change in company expenditure in the year was on taxation advice, rising 40% from £46,818 to £65,909. That was distinct from tax compliance costs, which rose 18.4% to £29,640.  The group said the uptick was due to a range of tax and regulatory adjustments.  

Former company private client head Clemmie Vaughan was appointed chief executive of the business after the period end in April. She took the role from Henry Maxey, who for the previous five year had worn two hats as CEO and chief investment officer, and who will remain in the latter role.

Speaking at the time of her initial appointment in January 2017, company founder and executive chair Jonathan Ruffer (pictured) described himself as ‘right chuffed’ at her promotion. 

‘Henry has successfully steered the business in its development over the last five years,’ he added. ‘This is Ruffer LLP’s third CEO since it started 22 years ago. Once again, it is an internal appointment, and a wholly appropriate development.’

Cash on the company’s balance sheet rose from £91 million to £94 million.

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