Part of the appeal of hiring staff in London was that it helped Unigestion deal with the strength of the Swiss franc, Frick said. AFP / BEN STANSALL
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Unigestion, the Swiss investment house that oversees $23bn of assets, was one of the first international fund companies to make a public commitment to the UK after Britain's vote to leave the EU last June. Just weeks after the Brexit referendum, Fiona Frick, chief executive of the Geneva-headquartered asset manager, opened the company's new UK headquarters in London's West End and vowed to keep hiring staff in the country.Six months on and the uncertainty over Britain's future relationship with the EU has intensified.Ms Frick responded by more than doubling the company's headcount in the UK (from 20 to 50) since January 2015 .While Ms Frick is confident the UK will not end up pursuing a strict clampdown on immigration from the EU, she is concerned about Switzerland's increasingly intolerant approach to workers from mainland Europe.Three years ago her country voted to limit the number of EU workers allowed into Switzerland every year in a highly contentious referendum. The biggest change Ms Frick has implemented since taking over as chief executive five years ago was to scale back the company's fund of hedge funds business, which used to account for the majority of its assets under management, but now represents just 20 per cent.
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