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Rating:Fido Surprise: Fidelity Names an Asset Management Chief Not Rated 4.5 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Thursday, June 12, 2008

Fido Surprise: Fidelity Names an Asset Management Chief

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

Not to be outdone by the hiring today of Bob Reynolds at Putnam, Fidelity has dropped some major news of its own. Michael E. Wilens, formerly a senior executive at Thomson Reuters, has joined the company as the head of asset management.

Michael E. Wilens
Fidelity
head of asset management
The move is a surprise one. Wilens has been the chief technology officer at Thomson since 2006 and had headed Thomson's legal publishing business as president and CEO of Thomson Legal & Regulatory's North American Legal division.

Wilens will head up Fidelity Management & Research Company (FMRCo), Pyramis Global Advisors and Strategic Advisers. He will be tasked with overseeing the asset management groups, working with fund trustees and directing the firm's investment technology and operations areas. He reports to Fidelity president Rodger Lawson.

"Amid rapid changes in the world's investing environment, I am confident that Mike's broad business, management and leadership skills will help Fidelity not only meet the many challenges we face but take advantage of a host of growth opportunities," said Lawson.

Fidelity spokesman Vin Loporchio confirmed to The MFWire that Wilen's position is a new one that Lawson had been looking to fill for some time with "someone to provide cohesive oversight of these three [asset management] divisions."

Loporchio added that Wilens was chosen because he fit that bill and is a "highly experienced business leader."

All in all, Loporchio explained, Lawson "primarily oversees all the distribution channels as well," namely the personal and workplace investing division and the institutional products group.

So it seems that Abby Johnson's role at Fidelity won't be changing. Loporchio said that she still reports directly to Lawson.

"Abby Johnson oversees our largest division, personal and workplace investing," Loporchio told The MFWire, "and she continues to lead that division."

--Erin Kello contributed to this story.  

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