AXA IM unveils one fixed income offering covering the entire credit continuum

AXA IM unveils one fixed income offering covering the entire credit continuum

01 December 2014
  • Fixed Income and Structured Finance teams reorganised by management style
  • Integration of structured finance assets into traditional fixed income

AXA Investment Managers (AXA IM) today announced the reorganisation of its Fixed Income and Structured Finance teams and the creation of a new Fixed Income and Structured Finance department.  Reporting into John Porter, Global Head of Fixed Income & Structured Finance, the new arrangement  provides a simpler structure, more aligned with the way clients think about their investments and will facilitate the integration of structured finance assets into traditional fixed income so that AXA IM can offer solutions which address changing client needs across the credit spectrum.

Commenting on the changes, John Porter, Global Head of Fixed Income & Structured Finance at AXA IM said: "The reorganisation of these teams and the closer collaboration between Structured Finance and Fixed Income will enable us to provide clients with solutions across the entire credit continuum.  This set up will enable us to diversify our product suite creating assets that clients would not normally be able to access on their own and enabling them to trade off liquidity or complexity for yield, which appears  very attractive proposition in today's low yield environment.  Our agility, experience and specialist expertise across the credit continuum mean that we should be incredibly well placed to respond to the changed market environment and meet evolving client needs."

The Fixed Income & Structured Finance division is now structured into five broad investment streams:

  • Active Fixed Income – encompassing all actively managed strategies – including traditional benchmarked, total return and strategic.
  • Buy and Maintain Fixed Income, encompassing all long-term low-turnover solutions for third party pension scheme and insurance clients – including SmartBeta Credit and accounting constrained.
  • Solutions – a new team under the leadership of Jean-Louis Laforge which brings portfolio engineering and credit research together with a Solutions Strategy team responsible for designing solutions across the credit continuum. 
  • AXA Group –  a dedicated team led by Gilles Dauphine focused on our work with AXA Group.
  • Structured Finance – organised around two platforms: Loans & Private Debt and Securitised & Structured Assets and led by Deborah Shire.

Chris Iggo, CIO and Head of Fixed Income Europe & Asia, leads the European, Asian and Global teams within Buy and Maintain Fixed Income and Active Fixed Income, with the US teams reporting into Carl Whitbeck, Head of Fixed Income US.

John Porter commented: "We have reorganised the Fixed Income team by investment style to better align with clients thinking and the way they manage their investments. Fixed Income management has changed a great deal over the last few years. The emergence of sovereign debt risk has shown how hard it has become to draw a distinction between rates and credit management. New regulations, especially for banks, have resulted in increased transaction costs, leading many clients to consider less active management styles. We have also applied this same philosophy of simplicity and client centricity to the reorganisation of our Structured Finance team."

Structured Finance will be organised around two platforms: Loans & Private Debt and Securitised & Structured Assets, with each one split between a  traded assets part and an illiquid assets part:

Securitised & Structured Assets

  • Alexandre Martin Min will co-head Securitised & Structured Assets, with responsibility for traded assets. He will also lead the transversal strategy dedicated to integrating structured finance assets into fixed income blended products along the credit continuum.  Within Alexandre's team, Gaelle Philippe will be responsible for ABS Europe and existing ABS products.
  • Christophe Fritsch will co-head Securitised & Structured Assets, responsible for illiquid assets and the business development of this platform. He will continue to lead the ILS team that he started in 2007 and today has an AuM of $506 million, but Francois Divet will take on the direct responsibility for the ILS team.

Loans & Private Debt

  • Jean Philippe Levilain will co-head the Loans & Private Debt platform for traded assets and will be responsible for delivering our leveraged loan expertise in funds, mandates and CLOs, with a team split between Europe and US. He launched our first CLO post crisis in the US in 2014.
  • Renaud Tourmente will co-head the Loans & Private Debt platform, with a direct responsibility for  the illiquid assets, including the mid cap platform that he launched over 2 years ago.
  • Laurent Cezard will head the business development team for the Loans and Private Debt Platform.

Deborah Shire, Head of Structured Finance at AXA IM, added: "Scarcity of assets and a low rate environment mean that the opportunities offered by disintermediation are at the very forefront of client needs today.  AXA IM has been a pioneer in structured finance for over 13 years.  We have reshaped our organisation to create a simpler structure for clients. Our new set up also reflects the need to differentiate between traded assets, where performance is delivered from active portfolio management and trading, and illiquid assets where performance comes from sourcing and structuring.  We have strength in both areas and experience across two credit cycles. Our disciplined and defensive management style will remain a key part of our DNA. This discipline, combined with our fundamental credit skills and our in depth knowledge of these assets and markets mean we should be  well placed to answer client needs."

About AXA Investment Managers

AXA Investment Managers is a multi-expert asset management company within the AXA Group, a global leader in financial protection and wealth management. AXA IM is one of the largest European-based asset managers with approximately €607 billion in assets under management as of the end of September 2014. AXA IM employs 2,300+ people around the world and operates out of 26 offices in 21 countries.

Follow us on Twitter @AXAIM
> Follow us on LinkedIn
> Visit our media centre

Rachel Caton
+44 20 7003 2371
Amy Butler
+44 20 7003 2231
Jayne Adair
+44 20 7003 2232