is making several changes to GMO's
] leadership team, and the firm is also preparing to buy a fellow value-focused asset manager.
| Scott Louis Hayward|
Grantham, Mayo, Van Otterloo LLC
CEO, Board Member
Today Hayward, CEO of GMO, confirms
that the Boston-based, employee-owned firm has agreed to buy Chicago-based Usonian Investments
, an institutional asset manager focused on Japanese equities. Usonian is led by PM Drew Edwards
, CEO and chief investment officer of the boutique.
Usonian has about $1 billion in AUM and 10 non-clerical staff, according to the firm's most recent form ADV, filed
on March 31. Edwards is listed as owning 75 percent or more of the company, while chief compliance officer Rami Natsheh
is listed as owning less than five percent. According to the GMO folks, they plan to offer Usonian's strategy as a standalone offering, in addition to incorporating it into GMO's asset allocation portfolios.
GMO has about $65 billion in AUM, including about $15 billion in its mutual fund business, and 400 employees, according to the firm's most recent form ADV, filed
on March 27.
As for the GMO leadership team, recent new hires include: Roy Henriksson
, joining in the newly created role of head of investment risk and trading; George Sakoulis
, rejoining as head of investment teams (which oversees all of GMO's investment teams except the asset allocation team); and Hylton Socher
, who joined back in January in the newly created role of chief technology officer. And shifting GMO leaders include: Carolyn Haley
, head of operations, taking on an expanded role as head of operations, finace, and fund treasury and tax, succeeding chief operating officer Jean-Pierre Mittaz
; Mittaz, who is becoming a senior advisor to the firm; and Andy Martin
, GMO's first head of investment teams, taking the newly created role of head of investment product strategy.
Henriksson and Sakoulis most recently worked with PGIM's QMA
, Henriksson as chief investment officer and Sakoulis as managing director and head of global multi-asset solutions. Back at QMA, George Patterson
, co-head of quantitative equities, is succeeding
Henriksson as CIO.
"With George and Roy joining Ben and Andy in investment leadership, we are adding complementary expertise to our already strong team, and the acquisition of Usonian brings another differentiated alpha source to our clients," Hayward states, putting the hires and deal in the context of GMO's "deep history of benefitting ... clients by pursuing contrarian strategies and taking advantage of significant market uncertainties."
Haley, an alumna of UMass Amherst's Isenberg School of Management and of Boston University, first joined GMO more than a decade ago as global head of financial reporting, later rising to head of portfolio operations, co-head of operations, and head of operations. Earlier on, she worked at Tekla Capital Management (fka Hambrecht and Quist Capital Management) and at PwC.
Henriksson, an alumnus of MIT, joined QMA in 2012 after a decade with Advanced Portfolio Management.
Martin, an alumnus of Dartmouth's Tuck School of Business and of Yale, joined
GMO back in 2017 as head of investment teams. Before that he worked at Cambridge Associates, Credit Suisse First Boston, and Donaldson Lufkin and Jenrette.
Mittaz, an alumnus of the University of Zurich, joined GMO a decade ago as COO after working in a similar role at UBS Global Asset Management. Earlier on, he worked at Goldman Sachs.
Patterson, also an alumnus of Boston University, joined QMA three years ago. Prior to that he worked with Axioma, BMO Global Asset Management, Menta Capital, and BGI.
Sakoulis, an alumnus of the University of Washington and of San Francisco State University, joined QMA back in 2014 after his first stint at GMO. Earlier on, he worked at Numeric Investors, UBS O'Connor, and J.P. Morgan.
Socher, an alumnus of NYA's Stern School of Business and of the University of the Witwatersrand, served as founder and CTO of VaraQuest before joining GMO back in January. Earlier on, he worked with Fortress Investment Group, Amaranth Group, Susqehanna International Group, NationsBank Capital Markets, and Chicago Research and Trading.
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