Bloomberg reports that Susan Wagner, who led BlackRock’s growth by overseeing purchases including the fund units of Merrill Lynch and Barclays, retired last month, signaling an end to the acquisition spree and underscoring that future expansion will have to come from attracting investor deposits.
With performance at actively managed stock and bond funds trailing peers, BlackRock has restructured its fixed-income unit and replaced equity chief investment strategist Robert Doll, 57, who said last month he was leaving.
'Size makes growth difficult', said Lucas Montgomery, a research analyst who covers assets managers at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. in New York. 'Growth is predicated on them winning market share and that requires a combination of distribution and performance'.
Wagner’s departure leaves BlackRock with three of the eight co-founders in an active management role, including Fink, who is chairman and chief executive officer, and Robert Kapito, the president. As founders left, Fink added top executives such as Philipp Hildebrand, the former head of the Swiss central bank, to help expand relationships with institutional clients overseas, and Linda Robinson, who joined as head of marketing and communications last year to oversee a five-year branding campaign.
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