AllianceBernstein appoints new CEO after Kraus exit

AllianceBernstein has appointed Robert Zoellick as chairman of the board of directors and Seth Bernstein as president as well as chief executive officer of the firm.

Zoellick and Bernstein succeed Peter Kraus, following his departure as CEO and chairman of the board of directors.

AB has also added three new independent directors – Barbara Fallon-Walsh, Daniel Kaye and Ramon de Oliveira – to a newly formed board.  They will join Zoellick and Bernstein. Current directors Denis Duverne and Mark Pearson will remain on the board, joined by Anders Malmstrom, chief financial officer of AXA Financial.

AXA owns around 63.8% of AB.

Zoellick has been president of the World Bank Group from 2007 to 2012.  Previously, he held various roles within Goldman Sachs such as group vice chairman, international; managing director, and chairman of Goldman Sachs’ board of International Advisers from 2006 to 2007.

He has also served as deputy secretary of the US State Department from 2005 to 2006 and in the cabinet as US Trade Representative from 2001 to 2005. In addition, he served in the George H.W. Bush and Reagan administrations,

Seth Bernstein worked some 32 years at JPMorgan Chase & Co. He was most recently managing director and global head of Managed Solutions and Strategy at JPMorgan Asset Management.

In this role, he was responsible for the management of all discretionary assets within the private Banking client segment.

Bernstein has also worked as managing director and global head of Fixed Income & Currency for ten years, concluding in 2012.  Previously, Bernstein served as chief financial officer at JPMorgan Chase’s investment management and private banking division.

Denis Duverne,  chairman of AXA’s board and a long-time member of the AB Board, AXA US, said: “In an industry that is confronting significant shifts, we need to continue transforming the business to improve the quality of our investment solutions while delivering our services more effectively. We are confident that with Bob and Seth we have the right leadership team in place to capitalize on new opportunities and deliver superior value to all of our stakeholders.”

Zoellick commented: “I have long admired AB for its talented people, outstanding research, top-tier private wealth business and extensive global presence. I look forward to working with Seth and the Board to build on AB’s legacy and commitment to being the most trusted investment firm in the world.”

Adrien Paredes-Vanheule
Adrien Paredes-Vanheule is deputy editor and French-Speaking Europe Correspondent for InvestmentEurope, covering France, Belgium, Geneva and Monaco. Prior to joining InvestmentEurope, he spent almost five years writing for various publications in Monaco, primarily as a criminal and financial court reporter. Before that, he worked for newspapers and radio stations in France, in particular in Lyon.

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