Putnam Investments announced Tuesday it is reducing staff by 8% and replacing its chief investment officer with a group of CIOs.
Roughly 115 staff positions will be cut as part of the firm's move to “lower costs, increase efficiency, spur innovation and strengthen its leadership for the future,” a Putnam news release said. The affected positions fall mainly within operations and technology, although a small number of investment positions will also be cut.
The news release also disclosed that Putnam's CIO Walter Donovan is leaving the firm.
Mr. Donovan will be replaced by a group of CIOs, Aaron Cooper, D. William Kohli and Robert Schoen, who will be responsible for Putnam's equity, fixed income and global asset allocation strategies, respectively, effective immediately.
All three CIOs will report to Robert L. Reynolds, Putnam's president and CEO.
Additionally, Michael J. Woodall, was named chief of operations at Putnam. He replaces Steven Krichmar, who is retiring.
Previously, Mr. Cooper was director of global equity research and a portfolio manager; Mr. Kohli was co-head of Putnam's fixed-income strategies and a portfolio manager; Mr. Schoen was co-head of global asset allocation and a portfolio manager; and Mr. Woodall was head of mutual fund shareholder services. It is still being determined whether and how these positions will be filled going forward.
Putnam will also aim to eliminate certain non-core business programs, consolidate vendors and lower overall administrative expenses as part of the realignment, the news release said.
The changes are expected to reduce the firm's costs by roughly $65 million, Putnam spokesman Jon Goldstein said in a telephone interview.
While Putnam and many of its competitors have been “living through a challenging environment for active management,” Putnam sees a “strong ongoing opportunity for active management in the marketplace and remains committed to delivering high-quality, differentiated investment products in addition to thought leadership,” Mr. Goldstein said. The moves announced Tuesday “will further position (Putnam) to seize opportunities for clients and the company moving forward,” he said.
Putnam had $154 billion in assets under management as of Sept. 30, which included $82 billion in institutional assets.