On Friday at the EFAMA Annual General Meeting, Naim Abou-Jaoudé of Candriam was elected as President. Additionally, Peter Branner of APG and Joseph Pinto of Nataxis were elected as Vice Presidents. Niam is Chief Executive of Candriam Asset Management, an IA member, with operations in London, Paris, Luxembourg and Belgium. He is also Chair of New York Life, which in addition to its US business, has operations in Asia and Australia. Peter is head of APG, one of the largest asset owner/asset managers in the Netherlands and is a previous EFAMA Board member. Joseph is Chief Compliance Officer at Nataxis, having previously been in the same role with AXA in Paris.
As some of you will know, over the past two weeks Chris Cummings and David McCarthy, IA met with all four candidates to discuss their vision for EFAMA and how this would align with the interests of the IA. In assessing each candidate's suitability, we carefully considered their experience, skill sets, and what their election would mean for both EFAMA and the IA. After consulting both members of the IA who are also members of EFAMA, and the IA Board, we decided to support the candidacy of Naim, Peter, and Joseph. In discussing their respective visions for EFAMA, three core themes emerged that we saw as critical to the future of EFAMA:
- Firstly, after nearly 18 months of internal debate about the governance arrangements of EFAMA, it was clear that was needed was a team that could help reunite EFAMA and put to one side the difficult political debate that for too long had consumed many Board deliberations. Collectively, we believe that the combination of Naim, Peter, and Joseph will help EFAMA refocus on the real needs of the industry and support the secretariat with a good mix of commercial experience.
- Secondly, it was clear that for EFAMA to be successful in the years ahead, it needed to have a Presidency that was more international in its outlook, and which was much more aware of the debates occurring at the global level through IOSCO and FSB. We took the view that ultimately we needed a CEO from a firm that had operations around the world to lead EFAMA to help balance some of the more EU-centric sentiments within EFAMA.
- Finally, and perhaps most importantly, we believed that EFAMA needed to be more focused on the business of investment management and the challenges facing our members who operate on a cross-border basis.
In addition to the change in Presidency, there has also been a change in the corporate members on the Board, with a specific focus being given to increasing the c-suite level representation on the EFAMA Board. For info, this now includes:
- Alexandra Auer, Allianz Global Investors
- Santo Borsellino, Generali Investments (second mandate)
- Bernard De Wit, Amundi
- Luca Di Patrizi, Pictet Asset Management (second mandate)
- Stéphane Lapiquonne, BlackRock
- Holger Naumann, DWS
- Helen Webster, Aberdeen Standard
We hope that under the Presidency of Naim EFAMA will now move on from a particularly difficult period and reorientate itself to the real issues that face the industry.