Orix Names U.S. Hedge Fund Chief

Jan 20 2011 | 1:07pm ET

Japan's Orix Corp. has promoted a former Merrill Lynch executive to lead a new U.S. division that will oversee a recently-acquired hedge fund.

Michael Blum was named CEO of Orix USA Asset Management. The new asset management arm will include Mariner Investment Group, the New York hedge fund Orix acquiried a majority stake in in October, as well as future asset-management acquisitions.

Blum joined Orix USA in October 2009 as head of U.S. corporate development. He previously spent 16 years at Merrill Lynch, rising to become head of structured finance.

Yoshihiko Miyauchi, the CEO of Tokyo-based Orix said earlier this week that the firm is targeting a 10% return on equity in three years.

“I am both excited and challenged by this new role and look forward to continuing to work closely with Jim at ORIX as well as Bill Michaelcheck and Brace Young at Mariner and their respective teams,” said Blum. “Asset management is an industry with many opportunities for both ORIX and Mariner.”

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