John F. Donahue, founder of Federated Investors, dies at 92

Federated is best known for its money-market funds, which accounted for $245 billion of the firm's $362 billion in assets under management as of March 31

May 12, 2017 @ 5:33 pm

By Bloomberg News

John F. Donahue, a founder and longtime leader of Federated Investors Inc., has died. He was 92.

He died Thursday in Naples, Florida, of natural causes, Ed Costello, a company spokesman, said Friday in an email.

Donahue, who served as chairman emeritus until his death, started the Pittsburgh-based money manager in 1955 with two high school friends, Thomas Donnelly and Richard Fisher.

"When Jack and I founded Federated as young men, I don't think either of us could conceive of the success that we would have helping people invest, save for retirement or achieve their financial goals," said Mr. Fisher, chairman of Federated Securities Corp.

Born July 28, 1924, in Pittsburgh, Donahue graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, in 1946. He served in the U.S. Army Air Corps before starting his career by selling mutual funds on commission.

He stepped down as CEO in 1998, when he was succeeded by his son, J. Christopher Donahue, who still holds that post.

"My father was a remarkable business leader and a man of tremendous faith who dedicated his life to building Federated and his community," he said in a company statement.

Federated is best known for its money-market funds, which accounted for $245 billion of the firm's $362 billion in assets under management as of March 31.

Donahue had 13 children, 84 grandchildren and 109 great-grandchildren, according to the statement.

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