Meet the Managers

The Merchants Trust is managed by Simon Gergel who is head of the UK Equity team at AllianzGI and specialises in managing UK equity income portfolios. He is supported by a dedicated team of fund managers and analysts.

Simon Gergel

Portfolio Manager

Simon joined AllianzGI in April 2006 from HSBC Halbis Partners where he managed over £900m in high income funds as well as core institutional and life UK equity portfolios. Prior to joining HSBC in 2001, Simon worked for 14 years at Phillips & Drew Fund Management / UBS Asset Management where he was involved in all aspects of UK equity fund management, including research, portfolio management and account director roles. He graduated in 1987 from Cambridge University with an honours degree in mathematics and is an associate of the UK Society of Investment Professionals.


Meet the Board

The Merchants Trust board is particularly experienced as its directors also sit on the boards of a number of large companies. So as well as providing shareholders with the reassurance of a diligent environment of checks and balances, they also provide the Trust with invaluable knowledge and economic insight.

Colin Clark


Joined the board in June 2019 and became Chairman in September 2019. He is Chairman of the boards of AXA Investment Managers UK Ltd and AXA Investment Managers GS Ltd, a non-executive director of AXA IM SA global board and a non-executive director of Rathbone Brothers Plc. Colin has had a 35 year career in asset and wealth management. His most recent executive roles were from 2010 at Standard Life Investments and as an executive director of Standard Life Plc where he was responsible for the Global Client Group. Prior to this he was with Mercury Asset Management, Merrill Lynch Investment Managers and S.G.Warburg & Co.

Timon Drakesmith

Non-executive Director, Chairman of the Audit Committee

Joined the board in November 2016. He was until recently an executive director and Chief Financial Officer of Hammerson plc. He was formerly Finance Director of Great Portland Estates plc and Group Director of Financial Operations of Novar plc. He is a Chartered Accountant and has held previous financial roles at Credit Suisse, Barclays and Deloitte Haskins and Sells.

Karen McKellar

Non-executive Director

Joined the board in May 2020. Karen has had a long career as an investment manager at Standard Life, managing the Standard Life Equity Income Investment Trust as well as several large UK equity open-ended funds.

Mary Ann Sieghart

Non-executive Director

Joined the board in November 2014. She has recently been appointed a non-executive director of Pantheon International Plc and was previously Senior Independent Director of The Henderson Smaller Companies Investment Trust plc. She is Chair of the Social Market Foundation, and a trustee of the Kennedy Memorial Trust, also holding other voluntary posts. Mary Ann is a political journalist and broadcaster and was formerly Assistant Editor of The Times, a Lex Columnist at the Financial Times and City Editor of Today. She was a Visiting Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford for the academic year 2018-19.

Sybella Stanley

Non-executive Director, Senior Independent Director

Joined the board in November 2014. She is Director of Corporate Finance at RELX Group plc, where she manages RELX Group’s global mergers and acquisitions programmes, and is a non-executive director of Tate & Lyle PLC. Sybella is also a Member of the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s Industrial Development Advisory Board and Co-Chair of the Development Board of Somerville College, Oxford. Before joining RELX Group in 1997, Sybella was a member of the M&A advisory teams at, successively, Citi and Barings. Sybella is a barrister.


Meet the Allianz Global Investors Team

Matthew Tillett

Deputy Trust Manager

Matthew is lead portfolio manager for Brunner. He is also the lead portfolio manager on the UK Opportunities strategy. Prior to joining AllianzGI, Matthew worked at Datamonitor and the Office for National Statistics. He graduated from Bristol University with a first class degree in Economics and Economic History. He also holds a masters (with distinction) in International Political Economy from the London School of Economics. Matthew holds the IMC designation and is a CFA® charterholder.

Andrew Neville

Portfolio Manager

Andrew joined AllianzGI in July 2004 as a portfolio manager specialising in UK small and mid-cap company portfolios. Andrew joined AllianzGI from Baring Asset Management where he managed the Baring UK Smaller Companies Trust as well as a number of UK smaller companies institutional mandates. Prior to joining Baring, Andrew trained as a portfolio manager at AIB Govett Asset Management. Andrew qualified as a chartered accountant whilst working at Deloitte & Touche and graduated from Imperial College with a B Eng.

Matthew Hall

Portfolio Analyst

Matthew joined AllianzGI in 2009 as part of the Global Graduate Program. In 2011 he joined the UK Equity Team as a Mid Cap analyst, and the Research Department as a Grassroots Associate. Prior to joining AllianzGI, Matthew worked as an intern at Russell Investments. He graduated from Southampton University with a first class degree in Mathematics. He also holds a masters (with distinction) in Investment Management from Cass Business School. Matthew has passed all three levels of the CFA®.

Stephanie Carbonneil

Managing Director, Head of Investment Trusts

Kirsten Salt

Company Secretary

Sarah Woodcock

Investor Services

© Allianz Global Investors GmbH 2020, Registered Office: Frankfurt am Main, Register: HRB 9340, Local court: Frankfurt am Main. All Rights Reserved. The Merchants Trust PLC is incorporated in England and Wales. (Company registration no. 28276). Registered Office: 199 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 3TY. The Company is a member of the Association of Investment Companies - Category: UK Equity Income.