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Ex-Citigroup Executive John Havens Joins Napier Park as Chairman

John Havens, who stepped down from Citigroup Inc. on the same day Chief Executive Officer Vikram Pandit resigned in October 2012, will join the bank’s former hedge-fund arm as non-executive chairman and partner.

The firm, now known as Napier Park Global Capital, will provide an office to Havens at its 399 Park Ave. headquarters in Manhattan, Mickey Mandelbaum, a spokesman for the $5.6 billion hedge fund, said in a phone interview. Havens will focus on senior-client relationships and generate ideas for how to expand the business, which spun out of Citigroup last year.

The role is a reunion for Havens and Napier Park managers Jonathan Dorfman and James O’Brien, who joined Citigroup in 2007 after working at Morgan Stanley for about two decades. Before leaving Citigroup, Havens and Pandit oversaw the design of Napier Park’s spin out, an arrangement that gave managers including Dorfman and O’Brien 75 percent of the investment firm for free, people with knowledge of the plan said at the time.

Citigroup broke off the unit as it seeks to comply with the Volcker Rule, which prohibits banks from investing more than 3 percent of Tier 1 capital in private-equity or hedge funds, or owning more than 3 percent of a fund. The bank still holds a nonvoting minority stake.

“As investors in this company, we certainly wish John and the team at Napier Park continued success,” Danielle Romero-Apsilos, a Citigroup spokeswoman, said in an e-mailed statement.

Havens co-founded Old Lane Partners LP with Pandit before selling it to Citigroup in 2007 for $800 million. Havens rose to lead the bank’s securities unit, and eventually became president and chief operating officer.

He resigned from Citigroup after the board, concluding that Pandit had mismanaged operations, pressed for the CEO’s ouster, a person familiar with the matter said at the time.

The Wall Street Journal reported Havens’ role yesterday.

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