​Wednesday people roundup

first_imgPPF, Barclays, RPMI Railpen, Aviva Investors, Willis Towers Watson, BlackRock, Prudential, AustralianSuper, PASA, Pensions Dashboard, HQ Capital, Muzinich & Co, Baring Asset Management, Macquarie Investment Management, Columbia Threadneedle, Spence Johnson, Deloitte, PhaseCapital, AllianceBernstein, River and Mercantile Asset ManagementPension Protection Fund (PPF) – The UK lifeboat scheme has created a new role in connection with its move to increase internal investment management, appointing former Barclays banker Ian Scott as head of investment strategy. Scott has worked for more than 20 years on the sell side, most recently at Barclays, as head of the global equity strategy team. Before that, he was at Lehman Brothers and Nomura.RPMI Railpen – Anna Rule has been appointed to the new role of head of property as the scheme looks to increase its in-house investment capabilities. Rule, a senior director and fund manager at Aviva Investors, will take up the position in the new year. Railpen, which manages the £24bn (€27.9bn) Railways Pension Scheme in the UK, has been shifting towards more in-house investments.Willis Towers Watson – Ashwin Belur and Dhiran Dookhi have been appointed to the Insurance Investment Solutions Group. Belur joins from BlackRock and before then held a variety of senior investment and insurance-related positions at Goldman Sachs, ABN AMRO and Brit Insurance. Dookhi is a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries and joins from Prudential, where he was a risk actuary working on enterprise risk management. AustralianSuper – Australia’s largest super fund has formally established a presence in London, opening an office in King’s Cross. Trish Curry leads the team. AustralianSuper’s head of external relations, Stephen McMahon, told IPE Real Estate the fund was basing staff in London because of AustralianSuper’s increasing involvement in direct investments, “particularly global property and infrastructure deals”.Pensions Administration Standards Association (PASA) – The independent body dedicated to driving up standards in pensions administration has announced that its chairman, Margaret Snowdon OBE, has been appointed by HM Treasury to the senior level Steering Group for the Pensions Dashboard prototype project. Snowdon will be one of two independent members of the Steering Group, representing the pensions industry.HQ Capital – Georg Wunderlin has been appointed chief executive at the alternatives asset manager, while Ernest Boles has taken on the role of vice-chairman of executive management. Marcel Giacometti is to become a senior adviser. Wunderlin, who has been working at HQ Capital and its predecessor companies since 2012, succeeds Boles, who will continue to advise HQ Capital on its operations.Muzinich & Co – Tracy Zhao, who previously worked for Aozora Asia Pacific Finance, has joined as a credit analyst on Muzinich’s Asia investment team. She is based in London. Global high-yield specialist Kashif Riaz has joined from Baring Asset Management, where he covered a range of sectors. Prior to Barings, he was lead credit analyst for the European TMT and utilities sectors at BlackRock. He is also based in London.Macquarie Investment Management – Markus Rottler has been appointed as head of distribution for the German professional buyer market. Prior to joining Macquarie, Rottler spent five years at Columbia Threadneedle, focusing on the professional buyer and institutional client segments. Before then, he spent seven years at Pioneer Investments.Spence Johnson – The data analytics and market intelligence consultancy focused on institutional asset management has hired Thomas Marsh to help grow and serve its US business. He joins from Deloitte and has 23 years of experience in asset management, primarily as a director at Cerulli Associates.PhaseCapital – Michael DePalma has been appointed chief executive at the Boston-based asset manager, joining from AllianceBernstein, where he most recently served as senior vice-president and CIO of quantitative investment strategies and director of fixed income absolute return strategies.River and Mercantile Asset Management – Gary Dowsett has been appointed as a global analyst. He has previoujsly worked at Phillips & Drew (UBS Global Asset Management), Willis Towers Watson, Schroders and Taube Hodson Stonex Partners.last_img read more

O’Brien could face Saxons

first_img O’Brien has not featured for Ireland since damaging his shoulder in the 24-22 autumn Test defeat to New Zealand in November 2013. The 27-year-old was closing in on a playing return after surgery when an infection forced a second operation on the same shoulder. “Eoin’s knee injury is not as bad as first feared, in the last 24 hours he’s seen a massive improvement. “We are hoping that both of those guys will be ready for next week and if they’re not it opens up an opportunity for Isaac Boss and Kieron Marmion to come in. “Cian (Healy is a little further behind Sean (O’Brien), but is doing pretty well.” Murphy revealed Ireland expect Lions fly-half Johnny Sexton to be available for the second round of Six Nations action against France in Dublin on February 14. Sexton is forced to sit out the Italy clash while he completes a 12-week stand-down period enforced by club Racing Metro after four concussions in 12 months. Sexton’s absence leaves Leinster’s Ian Madigan and Munster’s Ian Keatley vying for the starting berth in Rome, with Paddy Jackson also sidelined after elbow surgery. Murphy hinted that Madigan may be handed the fly-half reins for Friday’s Wolfhounds match, having featured mainly at centre for Leinster this term. “He is very nearly ready to go,” said Murphy of Sexton. “Obviously he picked up that injury in France so his club looked after that. “He’s not taking contacts, he can’t take contact until the three months is up and that would be the week of the French match. “Until that time it looks like he is going to be out, but he trained today, did all the handling stuff, all the non-contact training and all the fitness work, so he’s looking very fit and very fresh. “You’d fancy that because he’s been doing all the handling, all the kicking, all that kind of stuff, the contact stuff will fall into place that week.” Murphy admitted Madigan not featuring regularly at fly-half is “definitely an issue” for Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt. The 25-year-old may now start at 10 against the Saxons to ease him through to the Six Nations opener in Rome. “It’s definitely an issue,” said Murphy of Madigan’s limited club time at fly-half. “When he has played there this year he has been pretty good. “Joe (Schmidt) will have to make a decision on that later in the week. “The Saxons match might be an opportunity for Ian Madigan to get a little bit of game time at 10. “Ian Keatley has played loads of rugby at 10; we kind of know where he is.” O’Brien could yet face the Saxons in Cork on Friday night, while Ireland remain confident both Conor Murray and Eoin Reddan will be fit to open the Six Nations in Italy on February 7. “Sean trained fully today (Tuesday), trained last week in Leinster and has taken part in all the sessions,” said Irish Wolfhounds coach Richie Murphy. “There is a possibility that he will be available this week.” While flanker O’Brien could still feature in Cork, his Leinster team-mate Cian Healy’s chances now appear remote. The destructive loosehead prop has battled hamstring problems since September, but like O’Brien, is targeting a Test return during the Six Nations. British and Irish Lions scrum-half Murray continues to battle disc problems in his neck, but Ireland’s skills coach Murphy still tipped him to feature at the Stadio Flaminio on Saturday week. Leinster half-back Reddan damaged knee ligaments in Saturday’s 20-20 Champions Cup draw at Wasps, but Ireland bosses now believe his injury is not as severe as anticipated. “Both guys look like they’ll be fit,” said Murphy of Murray and Reddan’s chances of facing Italy. Sean O’Brien remains in contention to end an injury-plagued 14 months by making a comeback for the Irish Wolfhounds against England Saxons. Press Associationlast_img read more