Prin­ci­pal names Hous­ton CEO to ex­pand $540b as­set man­ager

The Pak Banker - - BUSINESS -

NEW YORK: Prin­ci­pal Fi­nan­cial Group Inc., the in­surer and in­vest­ment com­pany with about $540 bil­lion in as­sets un­der man­age­ment, pro­moted Daniel Hous­ton to chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer, re­plac­ing Larry Zim­ple­man.

Hous­ton, who joined the com­pany in 1984, took over as CEO on Tues­day, the Des Moines, Iowa-based in­surer said in a state­ment Wed­nes­day. Zim­ple­man, 63, will con­tinue to serve as ex­ec­u­tive chair­man and ad­vise Hous­ton, who was named chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer in 2014 and elected to the board of di­rec­tors the same year.

The in­surer more than quadru­pled as­sets un­der man­age­ment since be­com­ing a public com­pany in 2001, as Zim­ple­man and other ex­ec­u­tives pushed be­yond the U.S. and bol­stered in­vest­ing oper­a­tions to add fee in­come. The firm ac­quired Chilean pen­sion man­ager AFP Cuprum SA in 2013 and also took a stake in Lion­gate Cap­i­tal Man­age­ment to add hedge funds and Ori­gin As­set Man­age­ment to ex­pand in emerg­ing mar­kets.

Zim­ple­man "helped us evolve from a do­mes­tic em­ployee ben­e­fits com­pany to a global leader in re­tire­ment and in­vest­ment man­age­ment," Hous­ton, 54, said in the state­ment. Prin­ci­pal will "build on our lead­er­ship po­si­tions in as­set man­age­ment, re­tire­ment and pro­tec­tion." Prin­ci­pal's stock de­clined by more than half in 2008, Zim­ple­man's first year as CEO, as the in­surer's in­vest­ment port­fo­lio lost value in the fi­nan­cial cri­sis. The com­pany surged more than 150 per­cent since the end of that year.

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