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BNP Hires Martin Fridson for Asset Management Unit

BNP Paribas Asset Management Inc., a unit of the world’s 11th-largest asset manager, said it hired Martin Fridson as New York-based global credit strategist.

He was previously chief executive officer of Fridson Investment Advisors LLC. The Fridson Credit Strategy, formerly managed by Fridson Investment, will be integrated with BNP Paribas Asset Management, the Paris-based bank said in a statement today.

“It’s a great opportunity. It gives me a larger platform to tackle the whole global credit picture, while before I was primarily focused on U.S. credit,” Fridson said today by phone.

Fridson, 57, joins BNP as the head of the asset management arm’s strategy unit within the global credit investment team.

BNP Paribas Asset Management is a part of BNP Paribas Investment Partners, which oversees $729 billion.

Fridson Investment Advisors, a joint venture between Fridson and BNP, has been absorbed by the BNP Paribas Asset Management, he said.

“In 2010, we have seen strong interest from our clients in credit products, in particular high-yield strategies,” said Nicolas Chaput, BNP Paribas Asset Management’s Paris-based chief investment officer of fixed-income and money markets, in a statement.

Fridson led Merrill Lynch & Co.’s high-yield strategy group until leaving in 2003 to form his own research firm, FridsonVision LLC. At Merrill, he was the top-ranked high-yield analyst for nine straight years in Institutional Investor magazine’s annual poll.

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