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Rating:An OpFunds Vet Builds Out Retail For a $25B Shop Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Thursday, December 10, 2015

An OpFunds Vet Builds Out Retail For a $25B Shop

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

An OppenheimerFunds veteran is building out a retail distribution force for a publicly-traded, $25-billion institutional asset manager.

Scott Napier
Pzena Investment Management
Head of Intermediary Distribution
Scott Napier joined New York City-based Pzena Investment Management early this year as its first head of intermediary distribution. Now he's building his team.

In October he brought on board Jonna Dondero as director of business development for intermediary distribution. Her mandate, he says, is to engage with broker-dealers (they've identified about a dozen key B-Ds to work with) and deepen Pzena's platform relationships.

And Napier is still hiring, though he doesn't have a specific number of spots he's trying to fill.

"We've started the process of adding a few sales people," Napier tells MFWire. "I hope to have the beginnings of a team by the end of the first quarter [of 2016]. THe plan would be to add people at a measured pace from there.

Pzena was founded in 1995 and specializes in value investing. Traditionally the firm offered its wares in SMA form to institutional investors. Last year they launched their first mutual funds, and more are slated for 2016.

"The plan is to continue launching from strategies where the SMAs have significant track records," Napier says.

Looking ahead, as Napier hires wholesalers and Dondero deepens platform relationships, Napier will also focus on a third key area: third-party business, which includes both subadvisory work and defined contribution investment-only (DC I-O) distribution. Pzena already subadvises for the likes of American Beacon, Hancock, and Vanguard.

Napier doesn't plan to hire in this area, at least not yet.

"We can expand that business," Napier says. "I'm going to leverage the three institutional sales people that currently exist to help grow and seek out opportunities in the third-party distribution space."

An alumnus of UT Austin and Emory, Napier spent a decade at what is now Invesco before joining OpFunds. He worked at OpFunds for more than a decade and rose from regional sales manager to SVP for the Southeast division.

Dondero is an alumnus of UMass Dartmouth. In May she left Touchstone after two years as senior director of retail business development. Prior to that she worked at Orinda Asset Management and Pioneer, and she, too, spent about a decade at Invesco. 

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