Fund giant Vanguard said early Monday that John “Jack” J. Granahan — a portfolio manager with the multimanaged $12.4 billion Vanguard Explorer Fund, the $1.3 billion Vanguard Variable Insurance Fund-Small Company Growth Portfolio and the Irish-domiciled $125 million Vanguard U.S. Discoveries Fund — will hand off management responsibilities at year-end.
His investment responsibilities will be taken on by other portfolio managers at the firm, including CEO Jane White and Chief Investment Officer Gary C. Hatton, who co-founded Granahan Investment Management with Granahan, now 77, in 1985. White and Hannon have been co-managers of the Explorer Fund since 2000 and 1998, respectively.
“I’d like to thank Jack on behalf of Vanguard and our shareholders,” said Vanguard CEO Bill McNabb, in a statement. “His wisdom, investment acumen, and experience greatly contributed to the success of our shareholders over four decades. As one of Vanguard’s longest-tenured managers, he leaves behind a great legacy and team, who we are confident will continue to serve our shareholders well.”
The Vanguard Explorer Fund (VEXPX, VEXRX) has risen 37.1% so far this year vs. 27.7% for the S&P 500, while the Vanguard Variable Insurance Fund-Small Company fund has ticked up 37.1%, according to Bloomberg.
Before co-founding the firm that bears his name, Granahan managed the Explorer Fund during the 1970s at Wellington Management Co., where he also led the Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund.
Vanguard tapped Granahan Investment Management to manage the Vanguard Explorer II Fund when it was rolled out in 1985; it also retained the Grahanan fund-management team to run part of the Explorer Fund when it merged with the Explorer II Fund in 1990.
Granahan will remain chairman of the investment management group, which oversaw nearly $4 billion in assets as of Sept. 30, including $3.4 billion for Vanguard.
Other managers of the Explorer Fund are Century Capital Management, Chartwell Investment Partners, Kalmar Investment Advisers, Stephens Investment Management Group, Wellington Management and Vanguard Equity Investment Group. Vanguard says it uses a multimanager approach for 18 funds.