] is no longer a "somewhat sleepy value shop dominated by a few large funds." Morningstar's Fund Spy reports
on the shake up across the river from Manhattan that pushed the firm into a top 20 ranking in the mutual fund league tables.
Those changes not only boosted the firm's products, they also created a "certain amount of turmoil and uncertainty," notes Morningtar.
has been first among 62 partners at Lord Abbett since Bob Dow stepped aside in 2007. (Dow formally retired as senior partner yesterday).
Unlike Dow, Foster is a marketer by trade. It is no surprise then, that since taken over she has made a sales and marketing push to broaden Lord Abbett's base. She has also trimmed costs in the fund line-up while broadening distribution.
She launched new funds and relaunched others with new names and mandates and revamped the firm's analyst teams.
Morningstar reports that the moves have paid off. When Foster took over, three mutual funds made up the bulk of Lord Abbett's business. Today, 13 Lord Abbett mutual funds hold at least $2 billion in assets while another 20 claim more than $1 billion. (Short Duration Income with $25 billion is the poster child).
The growth has come at a price. PM and analyst turnover is up (Edward von der Linde, Eli Salzmann, Maren Lindstrom, Beth MacLean, Jason Duko, Michael Lesesne and Reid Smith are among the departed).
The Fund Spy explains that the departures have weighed on Morningstar's analyst ratings of some Lord Abbett mutual funds.
Sean Hanna, Editor in Chief
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