AXA IM Alts has appointed Lu Gao as head of client group for Asia, as the French fund manager seeks further growth in the region amid an organisational restructuring.
Gao most recently spent six years at Farallon Capital Management, where he served as head of Asia investor relations. In his new post, he will work across AXA IM Alts’ five newly laid-out business lines: real estate, infrastructure, alternative credit, natural capital/impact investments and chorus (hedge funds), AXA Investment Managers said Tuesday in a release.
Based in Singapore, Gao will oversee the client group’s role of raising new capital in Asia, expanding the third-party client base and maintaining long-term relationships with existing clients. He reports directly to Florence Dard, the Paris-based global head of client group at AXA IM Alts.
“The Asian market is more than ever key to AXA IM Alts’ ambitions to enter the next stage of growth,” Dard said. “Building on strong recent successes in the region, we are focused on securing further growth, expanding our client base and continuing to provide our existing clients with best-in-class service.”
Time at Amundi, Goldman
Gao is succeeding the previous Asia client group head, Sandra Lee, who has left AXA IM, a representative told Mingtiandi on Tuesday.
Before joining Singapore-based Farallon, Gao spent two years in investor relations at Och-Ziff Capital Management and had earlier stints in institutional sales at the asset management arms of investment giants Amundi and Goldman Sachs. He began his career as a fixed income analyst at Deutsche Asset Management.
Gao graduated summa cum laude from Singapore Management University with a bachelor’s degree in economics and is also a chartered financial analyst.
“Lu’s experience and strong track record in capital raising, investor relations and client engagement will be instrumental in driving this growth across our five business lines, and we are delighted to welcome him to the business,” Dard said.
With its latest appointment, the real assets division of AXA IM continues to reshape its Asia Pacific roster after some recent personnel moves.
In June, AXA IM Alts shook up its leadership team Down Under as it appointed Antoine Mesnage as the French firm’s head of Australia, succeeding Kumar Kalyanakumar.
The firm also promoted fund managers Chris Willey and James Cox to the respective positions of head of asset management and ESG and head of fund management in Australia to replace Quentin Shaw, who had performed the combined role of head of asset and funds management until his exit in September.
AXA IM Alts manages €184 billion ($188.9 billion) in assets, including €88 billion in primarily private real estate.