Invading The Boys' Club In Funds

Her predecessor tripled assets in seven years. Now, Bridget Macaskill, Oppenheimer Management's new chief executive, wants to pull the same trick in five. With mutual-fund assets becoming more concentrated in large firms, "it's going to be difficult for smaller companies to survive," she says.

The British-born Macaskill, 47, was named to head the nation's 18th-biggest fund company on Sept. 11. "She's a no-nonsense kind of person with good business sense," says Louis Harvey, president of Boston mutual-fund consulting firm Dalbar. Macaskill came to Oppenheimer from St. Ivel, a British food distributor. Twelve years later, she is set to become one of the highest-ranking women in mutual funds.

Her challenge: keeping a somewhat small player relevant in the quickly consolidating business. Macaskill plans to continue broadening Oppenheimer's product line, adding global funds and acquiring new products. She'll also focus on marketing to women, who she says need to take better care of their own finances.

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