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Thursday, June 11, 2015

A Chitown Fundster Entrepreneur Dies

News summary by MFWire's editors

A Chicago-based mutual fund entrepreneur died last week.

On Friday Keeley Asset Management [profile] issued a statement confirming that its founder, 75-year-old John L. Keeley, Jr., died on Thursday, June 4 after he "suffered a medical emergency that required surgery [at the Loyola University Hospital emergency room] to remove a life-threatening blood clot."

Crain's Chicago Business and Morningstar both reported on Keeley's death.

Keeley founded his eponymous value equity asset manager in 1982, and he entered the mutual fund business in 1993. His sons John III ("Trip", a trader), Kevin (CEO), and Mark (chief marketing officer), all work at the firm, and his nephew Brian is co-lead PM, alongside co-chief investment officer Kevin Chin. The firm's focus was on event-driven value investing, "on companies undergoing restructuring," Morningstar writes.

"While he was all business, he was also a very generous man who touched a lot of people's lives," Kevin Keeley told Crain's.

"John brought a very unique perspective to money management by seeking to identify value where others could not," states Brian Keeley. "Further, his vision and passion for the firm and its people was very special."

Kevin Keeley, 48, will succeed his father as president, while Brian Keeley and Chin took over day-to-day PMing last month as part of the the firm's succession plan. The shop's 42 employees now manage eight mutual funds and have $4.7 billion in AUM.

John L. Keeley is survived by his wife, Barbara, and by three sons (John III, Kevin, and Mark). A fourth son, Christopher, died in 2002. 

Edited by: Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

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