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Friday, September 07, 2012

Forward Expands with a New Distribution Head

Reported by Chris Cumming

Clay Smudsky of Forward Management [profile] only had to live with the "interim" in his job title for a few weeks. The San Francisco-based fund shop has just announced his appointment as head of distribution, replacing former distribution chief Jeff Cusack, who left the firm last month.

Smudsky was the head of Forward's institutional business prior to this promotion. After Cusack left to take a position as head of alternatives distribution with Nuveen Investments, Smudsky was given responsibility for Cusack's former job. Now it's his job officially.

Forward has also made a handful of other hires to its sales team, including naming John Harty VP for institutional sales.

All the names and all the roles are in the press release below.




Company Press Release

Forward Creates Head of Distribution Role



Move comes as Forward expands its sales team across all client segments

San Francisco, September 6, 2012 — Forward (Forward Management, LLC) announced today that Clay Smudsky has been appointed Managing Director, Head of Distribution, a new position at Forward. The move comes as part of a continuing expansion of Forward’s institutional and intermediary sales forces. The firm has brought John Harty on board as Vice President of Institutional Sales. It has also expanded its intermediary sales team, adding James Pagliaroli as VP, Regional Sales Director, Aaron Kravitz as Key Accounts Manager and James Lumley as Sales Associate.

In his new role Mr. Smudsky will be in charge of all of Forward’s business development and client service activities. He previously held the position of President, Institutional at Forward. With $5.4 billion in assets under management, Forward offers investment products and services to institutions, advisors and individual investors with a focus on outcome-based and alternative strategies.

“Forward has created the new head of distribution position in order to better align its sales activities and messaging across client segments as the firm grows,” said Forward CEO J. Alan Reid, Jr. “Forward has been steadily expanding its portfolio management capabilities and strategies, with more new products slated to come on line this fall. The firm also continues to build out the new brand, website, and thought leadership initiative it introduced earlier this year.”

“With his extensive experience in forging deep relationships with intermediaries, institutions, platforms and key accounts, Clay Smudsky fully grasps the challenges that all types of investors are facing, as well as the needs that are unique to each investor segment. This nuanced understanding gives him the ideal grounding for leading Forward’s sales efforts,” said Reid.

Mr. Smudsky, a 25-year industry veteran, joined Forward Management in 2002. He previously served in sales management positions at RS Investments, Salomon Brothers Asset Management and Nuveen Investments.

In another newly created position, Mr. Harty will focus on continuing to build Forward’s institutional business by establishing and maintaining client relationships with pensions, endowments, foundations and family offices in the western region.

With more than 17 years experience in the asset management industry, Mr. Harty most recently was Director of National Accounts for Pyxis Funds. He earned a B.S. in Business and Finance from Mount St. Mary’s University.?While expanding its intermediary sales team, Forward is also intensifying its focus on client education, said Smudsky. As examples of the firm’s expanding outreach, he cited Forward’sfwd thinking thought leadership initiative and the multi-city series of Alternative Mutual Fund Road Shows that the firm has sponsored in partnership with other asset managers.

“Creating innovative investment solutions is only half of the job,” he commented. “We need to help our clients better understand how to implement these tools in a constantly evolving global investment landscape.”?In the newly created position of Key Accounts Manager, Aaron Kravitz will focus on developing and maintaining relationships with partner firm contacts, such as home office relationship managers, product and platform specialists, manager research analysts, and sales and marketing professionals. In his role as VP, Regional Sales Director, James Pagliaroli will work directly with clients and prospects in the Southeast region and James Lumley, as Sales Associate, will also focus on serving financial advisors in this region.

James Pagliaroli was previously Senior Director of Guggenheim Investments. He is a graduate of Iona College and holds the CAIA, CIMA, CPWA and CMFC designations. Aaron Kravitz was most recently employed by AllianceBernstein Investments, where he was Assistant Vice President of Global Business Development. He received a B.S. in Business Administration from Georgetown University. James Lumley joined Forward from Transamerica Capital, where he was an Internal Wholesaler.

About Forward

The world has changed, leading investors to seek new strategies that better fit an evolving global climate. Forward’s investment solutions are built around the outcomes we believe investors need to be pursuing – non-correlated return, investment income, global exposure and diversification. With a propensity for unbounded thinking, we focus especially on developing innovative alternative strategies that may help investors build all-weather portfolios. An independent, privately held firm founded in 1998, Forward (Forward Management, LLC) is the advisor to the Forward Funds. As of June 30, 2012, we manage $5.4 billion in a diverse product set offered to individual investors, financial advisors and institutions.
 

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