Weekly roundup of people news, April 22

GIC makes leadership changes; Axa IM names EM debt chief; UBS AM hires China property head; Asia high-yield head exits Aviva Investors; Edmond de Rothschild loses Asia head of PM; SSGA adds ETF execs; and Cathay Capital PE appoints first COO.
Weekly roundup of people news, April 22

GIC makes senior promotions, names asset class CIOs
Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC has made several promotions and changes in title for the leaders of its investment teams, which will be effective from June 1.

Lim Chow Kiat has been appointed deputy group president in addition to his position as group chief investment officer, and Jeffrey Jaensubhakij becomes deputy group CIO in addition to his role as president of public markets. Lim Kee Chong remains deputy group CIO alongside his post as director of the integrated strategies group. 

In addition, several senior investment heads have been handed the title of CIO, with a view to enhancing GIC’s investment capability. There do not appear to have been any changes in terms of responsibilities or any additions to teams. 

Ang Eng Seng will become CIO for infrastructure, while continuing as president for Europe based in London.

Choo Yong Cheen, previously global head of direct investments for private equity based in London, will be CIO for private equity.

Lee Kok Sun, previously Americas head of real estate based in New York, will be CIO for real estate.

Liew Tzu Mi, previously head of fixed income based in Singapore, will be CIO for fixed income.

Bryan Yeo, previously deputy head of equities based in Singapore, will be CIO for public equities.

GIC did not clarify by press time whether the new asset class CIOs would retain their previous roles or there would be any further changes. 

Tay Lim Hock remains as president of private equity and infrastructure, and Goh Kok Huat as president of real estate and chief operating officer.

Axa IM replaces head of EM fixed income
Axa Investment Managers has named Michael Ganske as head of emerging-markets fixed income. He will start next month and joins from bond fund manager Rogge Global Partners, where he was London-based head of emerging markets. 

There is no replacement planned for him, because Rogge’s proposed acquisition by Allianz Global Investors brings substantial additional resources to the team, said a spokesman.

Ganske will replace Damien Buchet at Axa IM, who left last June to join Finisterre Capital. 

Reporting to Chris Iggo, Axa IM’s chief investment officer of fixed income, Ganske will lead a team of 10 – four in London, four in Hong Kong and two in Paris – managing around €5 billion ($5.7 billion) in assets. 

In June last year Axa IM merged its EM debt teams in London and Paris with the Asian fixed income team in Hong Kong to create a global EM fixed income division.

Several other fund houses have looked to increase their focus on this asset class of late. For instance, hedge fund group Man GLG hired its first dedicated head of EM debt in December, as reported.

UBS AM adds head of Greater China real estate
UBS Asset Management has hired Derek Lai in Hong Kong as senior portfolio manager and head of the Greater China team in its global real estate (GRE) division. He previously worked for Macquarie Capital.

This is a newly created role, said a UBS spokeswoman. The firm is building up its platform in China following the exit from a mainland residential development joint-venture product in December 2014 that it ran with Gemdale Corporation, she added.

This move comes alongside a wider push by UBS AM, and the Swiss group as a whole, to expand its business in China.

There are now three investment professionals dedicated to Greater China out of a total of 29 in the GRE team in Asia Pacific and about 400 globally. 

UBS AM’s GRE division has $11 billion under management in Asia Pacific – an increase of around 10% from a year ago – and $73 billion globally.

At Macquarie Capital, Lai was co-chief officer for China real estate. Prior to joining Macquarie in June 2014, he was head of portfolio management for real estate at ARA Asset Management in Shanghai. 

Lai has also held property-focused roles at Blackstone, Merrill Lynch, the Carlyle Group and Deutsche Bank in Hong Kong. 

Tim Jagger exits Aviva Investors after fund closure
Aviva Investors, the asset management arm of UK insurer Aviva, has closed its Asian high-yield bond fund, resulting in the departure of Tim Jagger from the firm on April 1. 

As senior portfolio manager for Asian fixed income, he had overseen the Asian high-yield portfolio since joining in June 2012. Jagger had previously worked at UK bank RBS since 2000, most recently as Asia-Pacific head of credit strategy.

Commenting on the fund closure, an Aviva Investors spokesman said: “We are focusing on markets and capabilities that are both scalable and, importantly, where we have the best opportunity to succeed.

“Our efforts in Singapore will focus on Asian investment grade and its contribution into both our global investment-grade credit and our emerging-market debt propositions, as well as our Aviva Investors Multi-Strategy range of funds,” he added. 

The firm’s global high-yield bond fund will remain its core high-yield product, he said.

EdR loses Asia head of portfolio management
After some five years with Swiss private bank Edmond de Rothschild, Stephen Leung, head of portfolio management for Asia, has left the firm.

EdR declined to comment on his departure.

Before joining EdR in 2011, he was head of discretionary portfolio management in Hong Kong at HSBC Private Bank, where he worked for seven years, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Leung has also worked for iVenture Investment Management, Axa Investment Managers, Invesco and Baring Asset Management.

SSGA makes ETF hires in HK, Singapore
State Street Global Advisors made two additions to its Asia-Pacific exchange-traded fund (ETF) team in February. 

Matthew Arnold has relocated to Singapore as vice president and head of ETF strategy and research for the Asia-Pacific SPDR ETF business. 

He is responsible for developing research to help institutional investors develop ETF investment strategies. Arnold reports to James MacNevin, head of the intermediary business group and chief operating officer of SSGA for Asia Pacific.

Arnold was previously head of institutional ETF sales for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (Emea) based in London. His responsibilities have been assumed by other members of SSGA’s Emea ETF team. 

Meanwhile, Robin Tsui has taken a newly created role as vice president and ETF gold specialist in Hong Kong, reporting to Arnold.

Tsui was previously manager of investment product and research at the World Gold Council. He has also worked for Bank of China International and Haitong International Securities.

Previously Arnold and Tsui’s duties were looked after by the global and Asia ETF sales teams, said a spokeswoman. The hires reflected continued growth of the SPDR business in the region, she added.

Cathay Capital Private Equity hires first COO
Cathay Capital Private Equity, a Paris-based firm with a focus on cross-border investments in China, Europe and North America, has hired Daniel Balmisse as its first chief operating officer. 

He will contribute to the PE manager’s investments, operations, investor relations and overall strategy. Those responsibilities were previously spread among the team.

In the 10 years since it was established, Cathay Capital PE has built up $1.5 billion in assets under management, and has launched new strategies and investment vehicles in the past two years, such as a midcap fund, said a spokeswoman. 

The aim of Balmisse’s appointment is to consolidate those achievements and prepare for the next phase of business growth with a more comprehensive approach, she noted.

Balmisse was previously executive director in charge of the fund-of-funds business at Bpifrance, which provides financial support to small and medium-sized enterprises.

He has also worked at CDC Entreprises as deputy CEO for venture capital fund-of-funds activities, and in the private equity division at the Caisse des Dépôts. 

Other people news reported in the past week on

Asian PE firms risk losing talent to global peers

Wright exits Invesco as institutional head

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