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Monday, May 03, 2010

Putnam Names Thompson's Replacement

Reported by Armie Margaret Lee

Putnam Investments has a new head of investment product management. The Boston mutual fund firm tapped Kelly Marshall to fill the post vacated by Chris Thompson, who left to join Columbia Management in March.

Marshall reports to Jeff Carney, head of global marketing, products and retirement.

The appointment puts Marshall in charge of all aspects of product management and development across Putnam's retail, institutional and retirement businesses. She joined Putnam last year as director of market planning and analytics.

Marshall is an alum of Fidelity, Wells Fargo Nikko Investment Advisors and Accenture.
Company Press Release

BOSTON, May 3, 2010 — Putnam Investments today announced that Kelly Marshall has been appointed Head of Investment Product Management. In her new role, Marshall will be responsible for all aspects of product management and development across Putnam’s business lines – retail, institutional and retirement.

Marshall, who joined Putnam in 2009 as Director of Market Planning and Analytics, will lead an experienced team of subject matter experts that introduced 14 new products last year and provide product expertise for sales and client service. She will be responsible for driving the firm’s ongoing commitment to creating and managing innovative investment product solutions to address the needs of Putnam’s clients. Marshall will report directly to Jeffrey R. Carney, Putnam Investments Head of Global Marketing, Products and Retirement.

"Kelly has already made significant contributions to the firm in setting the foundation for strategic marketing and product development initiatives at Putnam," said Carney. "Under Kelly's leadership, Putnam will continue to build a product line-up for clients and investors that seeks to capitalize on unique market opportunities, and address an array of environmental factors, such as longevity, income needs, volatility concerns, inflation fears and more."

Marshall has extensive strategy, market development and product experience, having spent nearly 20 years in senior roles at Wells Fargo Nikko Investment Advisors, Accenture and Fidelity Investments. She holds an MBA degree from University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Miami University of Ohio.

Since Robert L. Reynolds became Putnam's president and chief executive officer in July 2008, the company has made a significant commitment to developing and introducing new products, revamped the product lineup, and introduced a shareholder friendly product pricing structure. In the past 15 months, Putnam has:
· Introduced sweeping changes to the management fees on Putnam's retail mutual funds, designed to provide investors with a host of immediate and long-term pricing benefits, and to make Putnam’s product line-up more competitive in the marketplace. Changes included lower management fees, use of performance fees and fund family-wide breakpoints;
· Launched the fund industry’s first suite of target absolute return funds, which responded to a strong appetite in the markets for products that invest dynamically in pursuit of positive real returns over time, with less volatility than more traditional mutual funds, whether markets are rising or falling. The absolute return funds passed $1 billion in assets in December 2009, less than a year after they were launched, making them among the best-selling products in their category;
· Introduced the Putnam Global Sector Funds, the first suite of actively managed mutual funds to target stocks in sectors across the entire MSCI World Index. The individual sector funds are complemented by the new Putnam Global Sector Fund, the first fund-of-funds that provides exposure to all sectors contained in the MSCI World Index; · Developed and launched the Putnam Spectrum Funds, which invest in the securities of leveraged companies, looking to generate returns through investments across their entire capital structure;
· Revamped the Putnam RetirementReady Funds, Putnam's own suite of 10 target-date/lifecycle retirement funds, to add the absolute return funds as underlying investments, making them the only suite of lifecycle funds to integrate such strategies alongside more conventional relative return – or benchmark-focused – mutual fund strategies to control volatility.

Putnam's success at implementing its strategy has been confirmed by such independent industry voices as Institutional Investor, which named the company "Mutual Fund Manager of the Year" last month. And, in February, Putnam earned the #1 ranking in the 2010 Lipper/Barron’s Best Mutual-Fund Families Survey based on dramatic gains by individual funds and advancements across the entire fund complex in 2009.

About Putnam Investments
Founded in 1937, Putnam Investments is a leading global money management firm with over 70 years of investment experience. The firm was recently ranked #1 out of 61 fund families based on its funds’ performance during 2009 in a Lipper/Barron’s Fund Families Survey and named “Mutual Fund Manager of the Year” by Institutional Investor. At the end of March 2010, Putnam had $118 billion in assets under management. Putnam has offices in Boston, London, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Tokyo, Singapore, and Sydney. For more information, visit putnam.com.

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