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Thursday, May 28, 2020

A Multi-Boutique's Ex-CEO Dies At 59

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

The former longtime CEO of a publicly multiboutique asset manager passed away on Tuesday.

Sean Michael Healey
Sean Healey, executive co-chairman and founding principal of West Palm Beach, Florida-based Affiliated Managers Group (AMG), died after battling ALS, AMG CEO Jay Horgen and chairman Patrick Ryan confirmed yesterday. Healey was 59 years old.

Sean Michael Healey was born on May 9, 1961 in San Rafael, California. After earning his bachelor's and law degrees at Harvard and a masters at University College in Dublin, he worked in M&A at Goldman Sachs.

Healey joined the young AMG in 1995 as executive vice president. The acquisitive firm IPOed in 1997, and soon Healey rose to president and chief operating officer. He served as CEO from 2005 until 2018, when he passed the reins after being diagnosed with ALS.

Under Healey, AMG did dozens of deals, investing in a host of active institutional asset managers and building the multiboutique into a firm with about $600 billion in AUM (as of March 31).

"Sean helped pioneer the multi-boutique model at AMG in the 1990s," writes Craig Siegenthaler, managing director and senior research analyst covering asset managers and brokers for Credit Suisse.

"For the past 27 years Sean was my friend, mentor, and an inimitable leader, always exhibiting an indefatigable entrepreneurial spirit and unwavering dedication to friends, colleagues, and Affiliate partners. His deep intellectual curiosity and creativity, delivered with a penetrating wit, were inspiring and created tremendous value for AMG stakeholders over the decades," Horgen stated. "Sean transformed AMG from a nascent start-up into a leading global asset manager with an innovative partnership approach and unmatched track record of partnerships, providing solutions for independent, partner-owned investment firms from growth capital, to strategic support initiatives such as marketing and distribution, to succession planning — all while preserving their entrepreneurial spirit and culture."

Outside of AMG, Healey was involved with the Council on Foreign Relations, Harvard's visiting committee, the International Game Fish Association, the Peabody Essex Museum, and President George W. Bush's Export Council. And in 2018, with support from AMG and others, established an ALS research center at Massachusetts General Hospital. (The center, which lays claim to being the biggest hospital-based ALS research program worldwide, has raised more than $40 million so far.)

"Sean's passion, creativity, and dedication extended far beyond his work at AMG; he was a devoted philanthropist, father, and husband," Ryan stated. "When he was diagnosed with ALS, Sean did not miss a beat, channeling his leadership and entrepreneurial spirit into establishing the Sean M. Healey and AMG Center for ALS at Massachusetts General Hospital, which, typical of all of Sean's work, has become an innovative force in medical treatment and is transforming therapeutic approaches for people affected by ALS. His friendship and leadership will be deeply missed, and our thoughts are with his family."

Healey is survived by his wife and three children. No public services have yet been scheduled. 

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