By Chris Vellacott and Simon Jessop
LONDON Dec 19 (Reuters) - Neil Woodford, renowned fund manager at Invesco Perpetual, will join London-based investment firm Oakley Capital Management next May to set up an asset management unit, Oakley said on Thursday.
It said Woodford, who recently announced his plan to leave Invesco, will create a new business at Oakley, a group with interests including management of the London-listed private equity fund Oakley Capital Investments, in which Invesco is the biggest shareholder.
"We will fully support the transition and in the meantime we will provide an environment in which Neil can have the autonomy and flexibility to best serve the interests of clients," said Peter Dubens, Oakley Capital's founder, in a statement.
Woodford announced in October he would leave Invesco at the end of next April and be replaced by Mark Barnett as the firm's head of UK equities.
Dubens is an entrepreneur and turnaround specialist whose past deals include the sale of the sports websites and online gaming firm he founded, 365 Media, to Sky in 2006 for 100 million pounds ($163.92 million).
Oakley's current investments include holdings in publishing firm Time Out.
Woodford has been one of the most closely watched investment managers, directly managing around $49 billion of funds for Invesco Perpetual.
Oakley currently manages around $1 billion of assets.