Mercer's investment chief de Cristo to depart amid restructure

Phil de Cristo

US-based Phil de Cristo, president of investments and a member of Mercer’s leadership group, will likely leave early in 2017, according to Andrew Kirton, who has been named global chief investment officer.

Kirton told FN: “Phil decided a few months ago that after 10 years at Mercer it was the right time to go. The business is in good shape and he will be overseeing the changes happening within the company and probably leaving at the start of 2017.”

Mercer offers both investment advisory and management services to its corporate and institutional clients.

De Cristo joined in 2006 from Fidelity Investments and took on oversight the company’s investment business across both consulting and management in 2009.

News of his impending departure comes amid other personnel changes in the works at the very top of Mercer, which is merging its investment and retirement consulting practices under a newly-created wealth group.

Tom Murphy, Mercer’s US leader of delegated consulting, will take charge of the new wealth group in the US. It is not known who will run the business in Europe.

Alongside the wealth group, Mercer is creating a global business solutions division that will be run globally by Kirton. It will be responsible for the investment research and management that Mercer itself carries out for clients.

“It will be a powerhouse of innovation and investment,” Kirton said of the GBS unit.

Kirton has relinquished his role as Mercer’s EuroPac investment chief and will not be replaced. In his new role, he will report to Jacques Goulet, president of retirement, health and benefits at Mercer.

The move was announced to staff earlier in October and a transition period is expected to last until the end of the year, Kirton said.

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