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UBS GAM poach Pioneer executive to lead EMEA business

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UBS Global Asset Management (GAM) has hired Pioneer Investments’ Oliver Bilal to lead its EMEA business, capping a restructure started by president Ulrich Koerner.

Bilal joins the Swiss bank’s asset management business from Italian manager Pioneer in May, reporting to Koerner while also joining the executive committees for UBS GAM and UBS Group’s operations in EMEA.

He will also report to Andreas Schlatter in his role as a regional distribution head.

Schlatter is currently interim head of the EMEA business following Koerner’s restructure.

Bilal will relocate to London after only six months in Mumbai where he heads up Pioneer’s asset management joint venture with Baroda Bank.

Prior to this, Bilal was distribution head for the Italian asset manager’s German operations.

He leaves Pioneer after four years and becomes the second high-profile departure so far this year in a turbulent time for the asset manager.

Chief executive Sandro Pierri left the firm at the end of January, replaced by deputy Giordano Lombardo, after two and a half years in the role and 11 at the company.

Pioneer is wholly owned by Italian bank UniCredit.

However, discussions are ongoing with Spain’s Banco Santander about merging the asset management arms of both banks.

Together, Pioneer Investments and Santander Asset Management would create one of Europe’s largest managers.

UniCredit had been evaluating bids for Pioneer before entering exclusive discussions with Banco Santander for the potential merger.

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