BlackRock Adds Alts. Exec., Cuts Direct P.E.

Mar 26 2013 | 11:56am ET

BlackRock is boosting its alternative investments unit even as it closes a direct private-equity division after two years.

The world's largest money manager named Andy Stewart co-head of its hedge fund and p.e. division, which manages $110 billion. Stewart, who joins from Credit Suisse, will work alongside current head Matt Botein, who was also named chief investment officer for alternatives.

Stewart will focus on operations and business development and Botein on investment performance and oversight.

But BlackRock is bidding farewell to the direct p.e. team it hired from Merrill Lynch in 2011. The heads of that business, Nathan Thorne, George Bitar and Mandy Puri will leave the firm.

"We had a very strong direct private equity team, but given our clients are looking to us for other fund of fund solutions, we are going to transition out of the direct p.e. business," BlackRock spokesman Brian Beades said.

Stewart was most recently head of liquid alternatives at Credit Suisse, and is a former U.S. president and chief operating officer at Man Investments.

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