BlackRock to radically restructure business

An in-depth look at BlackRock's corporate restructure


BlackRock has rolled out a wide-ranging restructure of its leadership, boosting its multi-asset staff and overhauling its equity, fixed income, and real assets teams.

In a note to staff, seen by CIO, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink and President Rob Kapito detailed how the world’s biggest asset manager was to create a single, “globalized” fixed income business and combine its “scientific” and “fundamental” equity teams into one department.

The company’s infrastructure and real estate teams are to become a single real assets division. Its research department—the BlackRock Investment Institute (BII)—is also to expand, with BlackRock Vice Chairman Philipp Hildebrand switching from the Multi-Asset Strategies (MAS) group to lead the BII.

From February 1, Tim Webb will become global head of fixed income with Rick Rieder as CIO. Webb joined exchange-traded product provider Barclays Global Investors (BGI) in 2000, which merged into BlackRock in 2009. At BGI he was global head of fixed income investments.

Rieder worked at Lehman Brothers for more than 20 years before moving to R3 Capital Partners, a fixed income hedge fund. R3 was subsequently bought by BlackRock in 2009, with Rieder becoming a managing director.

In addition, Milan Lint and Alex Claringbull will oversee the fixed income team’s collaborations with BlackRock’s “portfolio solutions” teams in the US and UK.

“A deliberate and consistent approach to reshaping our organization to maximize the full power of BlackRock is something we are deeply committed to.”“Given the uncertainty created by central bank actions around the world, clients are valuing guidance on fixed income markets from a global perspective,” Fink and Kapito wrote. 

“We will meet that need and build on the strong investment performance that our fixed income teams are delivering today by creating a truly global franchise under the leadership of widely respected, world-class investors.”

BlackRock’s real estate and infrastructure teams will combine into one real assets department from February 1, under the leadership of Jim Barry. Barry is currently head of the company’s global infrastructure group. Marcus Sperber, head of global real estate, will report to him under the new structure.

The company is also set to combine its Fundamental Active Equity and Scientific Active Equity groups. The “unified active equities platform” will be jointly led by Chris Jones, Nigel Bolton, Raffaele Savi, and Jeff Shen. Savi and Shen are both former BGI staff, while Jones joined BlackRock in 2014 after a 32-year career at JP Morgan Asset Management.

This article first appeared on our sister site Chief Investment Officer.  You can read the full version, here