James J. Biundo and John Podjasek, will be co-managing directors in the new private equity group of Forstmann-Leff International, Chicago.
Mr. Biundo, president of U S WEST Investment Management Co., Denver, announced his resignation from U S WEST Aug. 19. A replacement has not been named.
Mr. Podjasek is a retired vice president from Allstate Insurance Co., Northbrook, Ill.
Forstmann-Leff brought the two on as part of its effort to create a multiasset-class global investment firm, said Don Phillips, president. Refco Group Ltd. formed the firm with the purchase of Forstmann-Leff, an equity shop, and with fixed-income professionals hired away from UBS Asset Management (New York) Inc. (Pensions & Investments, May 12).
Mr. Phillips said a private equity offering was added to the firm early on because of its growth potential.
Institutions will continue to increase their use of private equities in coming years, he said.
Contrary to what some say, there is not too much money chasing too few deals in private equity, Mr. Phillips said. Certain segments of private equity may be overheated, such as in buy-out funds or in the very earliest stage segments of venture capital, but there still are businesses seeking private funding assistance.
He said Forstmann-Leff already has $300 million in venture capital assets under management.