Legg Mason hires Wells Fargo exec to head acquisitions

Hoops will also work with global distribution team to develop products for individuals

Jan 6, 2014 @ 12:54 pm

After five years of net withdrawals, Legg Mason Inc. hired Thomas Hoops from Wells Fargo & Co. to head business development as the firm seeks to expand its products and make acquisitions.

Mr. Hoops, who was head of affiliated managers for Wells Fargo's asset-management unit, will report to Legg Mason chief executive Joseph A. Sullivan, according to a statement released by the company Monday. Mr. Hoops, 49, will be responsible for potential acquisitions of investment firms and work with Legg Mason's global distribution team to develop products for individual investors.

“A comprehensive global product menu is a critical component of Legg Mason's long-term success, and Tom is uniquely positioned to work with our affiliates, distribution organization and executive team to build upon our existing strengths,” Mr. Sullivan, who was named CEO in February, said in the statement.

Mr. Hoops, who was with Wells Fargo and predecessor organizations since 2000, was responsible for about $115 billion in assets.

Mr. Sullivan has said he will focus on acquisitions related to non-U.S. equities and alternative investments to spur growth. Legg Mason, whose assets peaked at $1 trillion in 2007, oversaw $675 billion at the end of November after subpar performance during the financial crisis prompted investor withdrawals.

(Bloomberg News)

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