Aviva Investors Said to Hire Pizer From Standard Life

Aviva Investors Chief Executive Officer Euan Munro hired former colleague Ian Pizer from Standard Life Investments after less than five months in his new job, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

Pizer resigned as an investment director on Standard Life’s multi-asset investing team, which oversees about 37.1 billion pounds ($62 billion), the Edinburgh-based company said in a statement today. He also co-managed the Absolute Return Global Bond Strategies fund.

Pizer is the latest departure from Standard Life Investments after Munro, who helped set up the Global Absolute Return Strategies, or GARS, left last year. Aviva Plc CEO Mark Wilson hired Munro to revive profitability in the insurer’s investment unit and mirror the performance of the asset management arms of Standard Life and Prudential Plc.

“I presume Munro is trying to replicate the success he had with the GARS,” Chris Apostolou, director at London-based recruitment firm Arbitrage Search & Selection Ltd., said by telephone. “Multi-asset investing in the U.K. is estimated to double in the next five years and grow to $450 billion in 10 years.”

Operating Profit

Aviva Investors had about 68 billion pounds invested in multi-asset strategies as of December. The investment unit contributed about 3 percent to the parent company’s operating profit in 2013.

Standard Life named Sebastian MacKay, a co-manager of the Absolute Return Global Bond Strategies fund, to replace Pizer, who had been employed with the firm since 2002 and reported to Guy Stern.

“Our multi-asset investing and macro team includes 44 talented people who are all actively involved in the day-to-day running of GARS,” Standard Life Investments said in a statement. “We have structured and increased the team in order to keep ahead of the growth we’ve experienced to date and which we expect to continue.”

The departure also comes after Invesco Perpetual hired David Millar, Dave Jub and Richard Batty from Standard Life in September 2012 to form a new multi-asset group.

(Updates with detail on fund from second paragraph.)
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