• Moves of the week
Bill Miller spent three decades helping build Legg Mason into one of the nation’s best-known money managers. Now the two are parting ways, as old-fashioned stock pickers fall out of favour.
In the deal announced on August 11, Miller agreed to buy out Legg Mason’s 50% stake in their joint venture, LMM, which houses the funds he manages. The terms weren’t disclosed. The agreement leaves Miller in sole control of the company and moves Legg Mason further away from its history as a firm that relied on individual managers to bet on plain vanilla stocks and bonds.
LMM takes with it the $ 1.25 billion Legg Mason Opportunity Trust, which Miller manages with former Legg Mason portfolio manager Samantha McLemore, and the Miller Income Opportunity Trust, run by Miller and his son Bill.
A spokeswoman for Miller said the firm planned to rebrand the funds and might launch additional funds in the future.
Soros Fund Management
Ted Burdick, chief investment officer at the $ 30 billion Soros Fund Management, plans to leave that post, according to people close to the matter.
A new investment head would be the seventh to hold that job since April 2000, when investor Stanley Druckenmiller quit to run his own firm. Burdick is expected to remain in his job until a new CIO is found and then will focus on debt investments for Soros.
The head of UBS’s innovation lab in London, who has helped put the Swiss bank at the forefront of efforts to develop new financial technologies powered by blockchain, is leaving.
Alex Batlin will depart in October to “pursue an opportunity outside of UBS”, according to an internal memo from the bank’s head of innovation Veronica Lange on August 17.
Batlin has spent more than 10 years at UBS and has risen to take a central role in its efforts to engage with the growing fintech community in London.
A computer scientist by training, he has in recent years established himself as one of the leading experts and practitioners on distributed ledger technology – of which the blockchain is one type – in banking.
Batlin is also the global head of UBS’s technology research services team charged with delivering IT industry research to all of the bank’s employees, including its top executives.
Nomura has recruited a new head of sales for Europe, the Japanese bank’s second senior appointment in a week to its markets business in London.
Wissam Farah will join in September as head of sales for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, according to a person familiar with the matter.
He will take up the responsibilities previously held by Chris Fleming, who joined the bank as global head of rates sales from the Royal Bank of Scotland in 2010 but left earlier this year, one of the people said.
Farah joins from Citigroup, where, according to his LinkedIn profile, he was head of investor sales for central and eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa as well as head of markets and securities services for the MIddle East and North Africa.
• The best of the rest…
BCS Global Markets recruits five investment bankers
Russian securities broker BCS Global Markets has recruited a team of five investment bankers to its Moscow office, including three from rival Sberbank, according to a statement by the company. Igor Ushakov and Azer Mamedov both become managing directors at BCS. Ushakov worked at Sberbank before joining BCS, while Mamedov joins from UBS. Alexey Kletenkov and Dmitry Kozyrev both join BCS from Sberbank as executive directors. Former Morgan Stanley and Nomura banker Oleg Zubarev has also been appointed to cover financial institutions. The investment banking team is led by Yuri Prilipov, who himself also worked as a managing director at Sberbank until June 2016.
Brown Advisory gets GAM portfolio manager
The wealth management firm Brown Advisory has hired Nick Andjel as a private client portfolio manager, the company said in a statement. Andjel joins from Swiss asset manager GAM, where he was responsible for private clients, charity and trust portfolios. The statement said that Andjel’s appointment follows on from those of Nicholas Taylor and James Tussaud. Taylor also joined Brown from GAM, where he was a portfolio director. Tussaud was previously at Citi, starting at the wealth manager in July, according to the FCA register.
Citi’s Ben Story joins corporate finance boutique
The former head of UK investment banking at Citigroup has joined an independent advisory firm, having left the bank in July, it has emerged. Ben Story stepped down as Citi’s head of UK investment banking and broking in July 2015 to focus on client relationships. He officially left the bank last month, according to a person familiar with the matter, and has since joined the Mayfair-based advisory firm Smith Square Partners as a partner. Smith Square advises on takeovers, restructurings and capital markets transactions, according to its website. Story is a well-known name in UK investment banking circles. He took the reins of Citi’s investment banking business in the UK in 2013, joining from Deutsche Bank, where he had been head of the industrials group for Europe, the Middle East and Asia-Pacific.
Dyal Capital Partners bolsters London team
Dyal Capital Partners, the alternative investment unit of Neuberger Berman, has expanded its London team with an executive from advisory firm Park Hill Group, as it attempts to collect up to $ 4 billion for its latest fund. Jonathan Ussher, a former director at Park Hill, joined Dyal Capital on August 15 as a vice-president, according to a person familiar with the matter. He left Park Hill in July after five years at the firm. Before that he spent three years as an analyst at London-based lower mid-market firm Phoenix Equity Partners, according to his LinkedIn profile. Park Hill has hired a senior replacement to its London team, who will start after the summer, according to a person familiar with the matter. Park Hill’s team in London consists of approximately 15 people.
Google’s VC chief Bill Maris to exit
The founder of Google’s venture capital arm, Bill Maris, is leaving the company, the latest in a series of high-level departures from parent Alphabet. Maris, chief executive of GV, which was formerly known as Google Ventures, is being replaced by Google veteran and GV managing partner David Krane, effective August 12, according to a person familiar with the matter. No explanation was immediately given for Maris’s departure.
Herbert Smith Freehills hires Freshfields partner
Herbert Smith Freehills has hired an infrastructure partner from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, the firm said in a statement. Christoph Nawroth will join Herbert Smith Freehills’ Düsseldorf office. His profile on the Freshfields website says that Nawroth advises on private and public M&A transactions and often acts on behalf of investors. The statement said that Herbert Smith Freehills’ practice in Germany had grown from one partner in 2013 to 16. The firm now employs around 55 lawyers in Berlin, Frankfurt and Düsseldorf. In May, the law firm hired M&A partner Sönke Becker from Baker & Mckenzie.
ING Wholesale Banking adds equity capital markets head
ING Wholesale Banking, the investment banking division of Dutch bank ING, has appointed a new head of equity capital markets from rival ABN Amro. Pim Kist takes on the role at the helm of ING’s ECM business in the Netherlands. At ABN Amro, Kist worked as a senior deal principle in corporate finance and ECM. He will report to Leo Greve, ING’s head of global capital markets, and Maurits Duynstee, global co-head of corporate finance. Additionally, Rico Overhaart has joined ING from ABN Amro and will work on Kist’s team. Greve said that the two hires demonstrated ING’s commitment to its investment banking business at a time when “some of our peers are retrenching”.
Kames Capital adds to equities team Kames Capital has added a new investment manager to its Edinburgh-based equities team, according to a statement from the firm. Robin Black, who has 21 years’ experience in financial services, joins Kames from Macquarie. At Macquarie, Black was in the bank’s Hong Kong office, responsible for sales of pan-Asian equities internationally. Before joining the Australian bank in 2010, he was at Deutsche Bank, where he was its New York-based head of Asian and Japanese sales into North America. At Kames, Black will work with global equity mandates. He will focus on Japanese stocks and will report to Kames’ head of equities Stephen Adams.
Panmure investor appoints new member to broker’s board Panmure Gordon’s main shareholder has appointed a new representative to the City stockbroker’s board. Qatari firm QInvest has added its global head of asset management Ataf Ahmed to the Panmure board, the broker said in a statement on August 15. Ahmed replaces Caspar Warre, who resigned from the board in late July. The board change is the latest personnel move at Panmure Gordon this year, and follows the exit of its chief executive and chairman in quick succession.
Percentile picks non-executive director
Compliance startup Percentile has made three new hires, according to a statement by the company. John Barker, an ex-Instinet and Liquidnet executive, joins the board as a non-executive director. Additionally, Brian Miranda has been recruited as a sales director. Lavinia Constantin joins as a product manager. Miranda’s former position was at asset management software provider Imagine Software, while Constantin worked for stockbrokers Peel Hunt.
Red Deer recruits senior executives
Red Deer, a technology company that services the asset management industry, has hired a chief product officer and a chief commercial officer, a company spokeswoman said. Stefano Vaccino, who becomes chief product officer at Red Deer, joins from fixed income technology platform Algomi, where he held the same position. Henry Price has been named as chief commercial officer. Price joins from Icap subsidiary Traiana, where he was head of product, credit and risk.
Standard Life boosts ESG
Standard Life Investments has boosted its environment, social and governance team, appointing two analysts to focus on responsible investment, the company said in a statement. Marc Brammer joins from Inflection Point Capital Management, having earlier worked at MSCI. Sophie Rahm joins Standard Life from Schroders. Both will report to Amanda Young, head of responsible investment. Young said that Standard Life was committed to being a responsible investor.
Terra Firma veteran resurfaces at US infra investor
A two-decade veteran and former senior director of Guy Hands‘ private equity firm Terra Firma Capital Partners has joined the London office of a US infrastructure investor. Damian Darragh, who worked with Hands at Nomura and later at Terra Firma from 1993 to 2014, is joining New York firm I Squared Capital as an operational director, a spokesman confirmed. I Squared, which was founded in 2012 by former members of Morgan Stanley’s infrastructure team, catapulted itself into the European market in March with the purchase of Irish power company Viridian for an enterprise value of about $ 1 billion, according to reports in The Wall Street Journal. I Squared is on the hunt for infrastructure investments in the US and western Europe following the close in April 2015 of its $ 3 billion ISQ Global Infrastructure fund.