Asness' AQR Gives $15M To Build 'Davos Of Finance' In London

Jan 8 2015 | 11:20am ET

AQR, the U.S.-based quantitative specialist run by Cliff Asness, has given £10 million ($15 million) to the London Business School to establish what it hopes will become the “Davos of finance.”

The AQR Institute of Asset Management will receive the money over 10 years and use it to support research, academic prizes and an annual conference.

AQR's largesse echoes that of the Man Group, which provided £14 million ($23 million) to establish a quantitative research institute at Oxford. The Financial Times noted that the gifts differ in that Man intends to locate some of its researchers at its institute, whereas Asness said that AQR would not be involved in the operations of the London institute, although he hoped it would be a source of “talented people” for recruitment and joint research.

Ralph Koijen, a finance prof at LBS and director of the AQR Institute, told the FT it will not focus exclusively on quant research, but will examine active fund management, the market impact of portfolio construction and retirement savings in an ageing society.

The institute will be chaired by Bob Jenkins, former chief executive of F&C Asset Management and a former member of the Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee, who is also an adjunct professor of finance at LBS.


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