Vanguard announced today that Graham E. French, portfolio manager of the $2.4 billion Vanguard Precious Metals and Mining Fund, is stepping down from day-to-day fund management responsibilities at M&G Investment Management Limited, effective immediately. 

 "On behalf of Vanguard, I'd like to thank Graham for nearly 25 years of dedication to our clients,” said Vanguard CEO Bill McNabb in a statement. “In addition to serving as a portfolio manager, Graham was instrumental in building the M&G investment team, and we believe that the fund will continue to benefit from the firm’s long-term approach and deep expertise in the precious metals and mining industries.”

French has managed the Precious Metals and Mining Fund since 1996; before that he spent five years as assistant manager. He joined M&G in 1989 and will remain in a consultative role with the fund for the next six months.

Co-manager Randeep Somel, CFA, will assume sole responsibility as portfolio manager. Somel joined M&G in 2005, working closely with French for the past five years. M&G said a co-manager will be named in the near future.

Founded in 1931, M&G is based in London and manages more than $300 billion in assets. The firm has served as investment advisor to the Precious Metals and Mining Fund since its inception in 1984, and also oversees portions of the $22 billion Vanguard International Growth Fund, $222.5 million Vanguard Emerging Markets Select Fund, and $2.2 billion International Portfolio of Vanguard Variable Insurance Fund.

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