Jana Hires Chrysler, North Fork Vets As Advisers

Jul 31 2008 | 12:18pm ET

Jana Partners has added several decades of operating experience to its activist effort.

The New York-based hedge fund has retained a pair of once-high profile corporate executives as advisers to its operational activism campaigns. Jerome York, one-time CFO at both Chrysler and IBM, and former North Fork Bancorp CEO John Kanas will assist Jana, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Both men will invest with the hedge fund as part of their partnership.

The choice of York and Kanas may provide insight into the secretive Jana’s future strategy.

“Obviously, there’s a great deal of dislocation in an industry where I’ve spent much of my life,” Kanas told the Journal. He spent about 30 years at North Fork, which was acquired by Capital One Financial two years ago.

For his part, York could offer insight on the manufacturing and technology sectors.

Neither man is a full-time employee of Jana. Kanas told the Journal that he will continue to advise other hedge funds and others seeking his counsel.

Jana is far from the only hedge fund employing industry experts. Cerberus Capital Management has more than 100 executives on retainer, serving as advisers, consultants or running portfolio companies.

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