A spring clean for Catella’s new CEO
Catella Fonder’s new CEO as of March this year is Mats Andersson, the former CEO of Ålandsbanken Sverige who has a 25-year history in the banking and asset management community.
This puts Andersson (pictured) in charge of a fund provider probably best known for its Swedish and Nordic equity, fixed interest and hedge fund products, as part of the broader Catella Group, which also includes wealth management, corporate finance and property funds.
Although still freshly installed, Anderson does have some clear objectives in mind for the first few months in his new role.
Summed up, it is about obtaining a deeper understanding of the business and existing competencies within the organisation before he pushes for any significant tactical or strategic business decisions.
“My role is to look over the product range, customer segments, and how are they sold to. That is what I will be focused on during the spring,” Anderson says.
“It may lead to bigger changes, or it may lead to small changes. Now, I do not know. It is a blank page, but the fundamental objective is to grow.”
One key decision will be around to what extent Catella adjusts its distribution setup via its so-called ‘partners’.
“This is a product company, and we have a sales focus on third-party distribution. Therefore, today, we do not have any significant business directly to retail customers or institutions,” Andersson explains.
Then there are the questions around the relationship with the group’s advisory or wealth management activities.
Foreign distribution is another. Catella is already represented in other markets through its Luxembourg-based Sicav funds, but broadening out means understanding to what extent, say, Nordic long-only mandates appeal compared to alternative strategies. Catella Fonder currently does both. Any decisions on distribution may, in turn, be affected by the decisions reached on volume and products. With an open mandate to take the fund company forward, it clearly means there is a possibility of big changes here.