US - Hedge fund group Capital Z Asset Management has hired CalPERS' senior investment officer Christianna Wood as its chief executive.
Eric Baggesen, senior portfolio manager, will succeed her as acting senior investment officer, global equity.
CalPERS chief investment officer Russell Read paid tribute to Wood for her performance at the pension fund. He said: "She's superbly skilled and has managed a huge, complex portfolio with great finesse and grace, resulting in great performance.
"We wish her all the best in her new role with Capital Z."
In her role at CalPERS, Wood managed as much as US$150bn in domestic and international public equities, including a $7.5bn hedge fund portfolio and $7bn in activist corporate governance funds.
Under her leadership, the pension fund's global equity unit added internal capabilities in domestic small cap, international and emerging markets; increased in-house staff management of equity capital; and managed more than $5bn in domestic enhanced indexed and other leading edge strategies.
In her resignation letter, Wood said she was excited about the position she was about to take. She said: "The CEO position at the cutting edge of the most creative element in the investment industry, I believe, is too unique an opportunity to turn down."
On 24 January, Capital Z Investment Partners LLC announced the completion of a management buyout of its hedge fund sponsorship business. As a result of the transaction, Capital Z Asset Management was formed to continue and expand the hedge fund sponsorship activities that Capital Z began in 1998.
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