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Rating:A $432B-AUM Firm's Board Picks Two CEOs, But ... Not Rated 5.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Wednesday, March 23, 2022

A $432B-AUM Firm's Board Picks Two CEOs, But ...

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

The board of a $432-billion-AUM (as of December 31), publicly traded, multinational mutual fund firm has found the firm's next two chiefs, with one taking the reins for three months before the other joins this summer.

Ali Dibadj
AllianceBernstein Holding L.P.
Chief Financial Officer, Head of Strategy
Today, Richard Gillingwater, chairman of the board of London-based Janus Henderson Group plc [profile], confirms that Roger Thompson (age 54) will take over as interim CEO on April 1, then Ali Dibadj (age 46) will join as (non-interim) CEO and board member on June 27. Meanwhile, current CEO Dick Weil (age 58) will retire from the company and its board on March 31, as expected, while staying on through June 30 as an adviser to the company.

New York City-based Dibadj resigned yesterday from AllianceBernstein, according to a company filing with the SEC. He spent 16 years there, most recently serving as chief financial officer and head of strategy at the now-Nashville-based asset manager.

At AB, Bill Siemers has been promoted to interim chief financial officer in Dibadj's stead. White Plains, New York-based Siemers, a senior vice president, has served as controller and chief accounting officer of the firm for four years.

At Janus Henderson, London-based Thompson has served as group CFO of the company (and predecessor Henderson Global Investors) since 2013. As for Weil, based in Denver, he took over Janus Capital Group 12 years ago and stayed on after the 2017 merger with Henderson, later becoming its sole CEO.

The two-step Janus Henderson leadership change comes four months after Gillingwater publicly revealed Weil's impending retirement. The leadership changes also come as the fund firm is preparing to spin off a longtime subsidiary next quarter. And the CEO shuffle comes less than two months after Trian Partners (a firm that owns a sizable minority stake, 16.7 percent as of early last month, in Janus Henderson and is led by high-profile activist investor Nelson Peltz) gained two seats on Janus Henderson's 12-person board of directors. (All but one of those board members are independent.)

Gillingwater lauds Dibadj as "the ideal choice to lead [Janus Henderson] into its next phase of growth and value creation."

"We conducted an extensive internal and external search to identify an executive who both understands our business and has the necessary strategic expertise to help drive the firm's next phase of growth for the benefit of our clients and shareholders," Gillingwater states.

Gillingwater also lauds Thompson as "representative of the deep bench of talent ... at Janus Henderson," thanks Thompson for stepping up during the CEO transition, and thanks Weil for his years of leadership.

Dibadj, for his part, praises the Janus Henderson for its "commitment to deliver for its clients with investment and servicing excellence."

"The executive team, the Board, and I look forward to identifying, expediting, and capturing growth and innovation that creates value for our clients, employees, shareholders, communities, and all stakeholders," Dibadj states.

Dibadj joined AB back in 2006 as a senior analyst for AB Bernstein Research Services. He later served as an equities PM, co-led the firm's strategy committee, rose in 2020 to head of finance and strategy, then took over as CFO last year. Earlier, he worked in management consulting at McKinsey and Mercer. He is an alumnus of Harvard Law School and of Harvard College.

Before joining Henderson nine years ago, Thompson spent about two decades at J.P. Morgan, rising to head of JPMAM in the UK. He also trained as an accountant at PricewaterhouseCoopers. He is an alumnus of Exeter University.

Weil, before taking over Janus in 2010, spent 15 years at Pimco, rising to global head of Pimco Advisory. Earlier, he worked with Bankers Trust and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett. He is an alumnus of the University of Chicago Law School and of Duke University.

Back in 2004, Siemers joined AB as SVP and director of financial report, and he rose to controller and chief accounting officer in 2018. Before that, he spent more than a dozen years at Altria and also worked at Deloitte as an auditor. He is an alumnus of Fairfield University. 

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