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GAM CEO Freidman To Step Down Immediately

GAM Holding AG announces that Alexander Friedman, Group CEO and the Board of Directors have agreed that the next stage of the company's evolution would be best served by new leadership and that Mr Friedman will step down today. The Board has appointed David Jacob, a member of the Board of Directors, as interim Group CEO and member of the Group Management Board, whilst a search for a new CEO is conducted. Mr Jacob has extensive industry experience, having held senior leadership roles at a number of asset management businesses.

Mr Jacob's immediate priority will be to ensure that the steps necessary to drive forward GAM's strategy and to support profitability are actioned as soon as possible.  Further updates will be given in due course. 

Hugh Scott-Barrett, Chairman of GAM Holding AG, said: "The Group is facing some important decisions as we seek to position the business for future growth. Alex and the Board of Directors jointly agreed that new leadership will better enable us to take the action necessary to support profitability and drive forward the Group's strategy. David Jacob is the ideal person to lead the company, given both his detailed understanding of the Group and his successful track record leading asset management businesses.

"There is a huge amount of talent in this business and there is much to be proud of in the way in which we serve our clients, our differentiated range of product offerings and the skill of our portfolio management teams in delivering excellent investment performance. David's expertise and experience will give those teams the leadership and support they need as we focus on delivering for our clients.

"Alex has ably led the business during a time of unprecedented challenges for the active asset management and hedge funds industry. Alex had the full support of the Board in the decision to suspend a portfolio manager in July. During his tenure as CEO he has driven a significant programme of change that has made us a more modern, diversified and cost-effective business. We would like to thank Alex for his significant efforts over the last four years and wish him well for the future."

David Jacob said: "GAM is a premier asset management company known for its talented portfolio managers. Despite the setback suffered by the business this year, we are fortunate to have a Board with a wide and relevant range of experience as well as the strong management team that Alex assembled. I look forward to working with both teams and ensuring that we keep our focus firmly on continuing to meet our clients' expectations." 

The move comes amidst a tough few period for GAM. Earlier in the summer it suspended Tim Haywood, a bond fund manager, and subsequently liquidated more than $7bn of its bond funds.