China’s second largest asset management firm ChinaAMC has named former senior CSRC official Tang Xiaodong as its chief compliance officer.

The firm, which had Rmb317 billion ($51.6 billion) in assets as at the end of June, announced the appointment in a filing on its website late last week. His official start date was September 12.

Tang stepped down from his role as deputy head of the international division at the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) in August.

That move sparked media speculation that he was due to join ChinaAMC after Teng Tianming quit as the firm’s general manager in the same month for personal reasons.

It means Tang’s role as CCO is contrary to expectations. However, media have also reported expectations that he will transition into the general manager role over time.

Teng had only served in the role for two years, having taken over from ChinaAMC founder Fan Yonghong in July 2012.

Sources suspect that Citic Group, ChinaAMC’s largest shareholder, has been seeking to change the old guard and bring in a new management team.

“If Tang moves from the role of CCO to general manager it would signify the end of ChinaAMC management changes,” said a Shanghai-based industry observer. “If the changes run smoothly, ChinaAMC will have a stable management team to execute a long-term development plan.”

In a reform drive with wider-reaching ramifications, Citic announced plans this March to inject the majority of its assets into its Hong Kong-listed unit Citic Pacific, including potentially relocating its headquarters to Hong Kong.

It has been reported this could set a precedent for other state-owned firms to follow, using the city’s more stringent regulatory environment to incorporate international best practice.

Prior to serving as deputy head of the CSRC’s international division, Tang worked as deputy director of CSRC’s investment fund supervision department. He had joined the regulator in 2009.

He has an international background, having also worked for financial institutions including JP Morgan Chase, ABN Amro, Mariner Investment Group and the Royal Bank of Scotland.

In response to AsianInvestor queries, a ChinaAMC spokeswoman confirmed only that Tang would be responsible for compliance and regulation at the firm. She declined to comment further.