His role will be split between Richard Colwell and William Davies.
Colwell, who took over from Harrison as lead manager of the firm’s UK Equity Income Fund in September last year and who has worked closely with Harrison since joining the firm in 2010 will take on the new role of head of UK equities. Davies, who is currently head of global equities will join Columbia Threadneedle’s executive committee and take on the role of head of equities, EMEA.
In the new role Davies, who has been with Columbia Threadneedle since 1994, will assume overall reporting responsibility for the UK and European Equity teams as well as the EMEA-based US, Asia, Emerging Market and Global equity teams.
The other change will be that Iain Richards, head of governance and responsible investment, EMEA, who currently reports to Harrison will now report to EMEA CEO, Mark Burgess.
Of Harrison’s departure, Burgess said: “While we are sad to see Leigh go, his retirement has been in the planning for some time and he leaves in place a strong team leader in Richard with whom he has worked for the past six years.”
Harrison who said he was proud of the strength of the franchise he has helped build over the past 10 years added: “I feel the time is now right for me move on and do some of the things I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I leave the team in great shape and I am confident they will continue to deliver excellent performance for clients.”