Allianz outlines major reform at asset management unit

Allianz has announced a major shake-up of its €1.4trn asset management operations, putting them under a holding company called Allianz Asset Management, and naming Jay Ralph, currently a member of Allianz’s board of management, as its chairman.

As part of the changes, Allianz Global Investors will come under global leadership.

Pimco, part of the Allianz group for 11 years, is to take “sole responsibility” for distributing its offerings worldwide, building on the development in the US last year, when Allianz separated the distribution of Pimco and Allianz Global Investors products.

The German insurer said the changes, effective from next January, would strengthen Pimco’s and AGI’s brands, and help differentiate them from one another.

Ralph (pictured) said: “Pimco and Allianz Global Investors will have the scale and the opportunity to develop further their distinctive businesses globally and increase their contribution to Allianz’s overall business.”

He will chair a global executive committee of Allianz’s Asset Management division comprising Elizabeth Corley, chief executive of AGI; Douglas Hodge, Pimco’s chief operating officer; and Thomas Naumann, who is now head of group planning and controlling of Allianz SE, and will become chief financial officer of AAM.

Elizabeth Corley will be chief executive of AGI, with Andreas Utermann its chief investment officer. Marna Whittington, who is CEO of Allianz Global Investors Capital and has worked with AGI for 10 years, will retire at the end of 2011.

Pimco continues to be led by Bill Gross, its founder and co-CIO, and Mohamed El-Erian, its CEO and co-CIO.

El-Erian said: “We expect this new structure to facilitate our continued evolution to become the provider of choice to clients around the world for their complete global investment solutions in a rapidly changing global landscape.”

Joachim Faber, who is retiring from being a member of the board of management of Allianz SE next year, said the changes reflect “the global scale and broadening scope of Pimco’s investment management platform, and our support for the continuation of that success story; and the complementary nature and approaches of our AllianzGI businesses, and our confidence in their ability to leverage further their collective expertise for the benefit of clients globally.”

Corley said: “Global capability with local delivery is much talked about, but rare to find in practice; yet this is something we have built over the past years thanks to our history of preserving boutique investment excellence, and combining this with far-reaching quality client service.”


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