Yarra Capital, the diversified Melbourne-based equities boutique, is building an impressive and experienced board, with the latest appointment announced last week (July 20). It is Mark Lazberger, who was most recently the chief executive of the former Colonial First State Global Asset Management (now First Sentier Investors, owned by Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group).
Lazberger, who spent much of his career at State Street Global Advisors, joins: Yarra Capital’s non-executive chair Mark Burgess, a former funds manager, also at Colonial, and chief executive of the Future Fund; Michael Gordon, a former chief executive of Schroders in Australia, Fidelity’s head of investments in Sydney and CIO in Hong Kong and London, CIO of equities for BNP Paribas in London, and then head of investments at Perpetual back in Australia before his semi-retirement; two representatives of private equity backer TA Associates, Edward Sippel in Hong Kong and Michael Berk in the US; Masato Degawa in Japan, where he was previously a president of BlackRock; and executive directors Dion Hershan, the firm’s managing director; and Katie Hudson, the head of Australian equities research.
Lazberger built SSGA into Australia’s largest institutional manager, between 1991 and 2002, before moving to Tokyo with the firm, as president of the Japan business as well APAC regional boss and then onto London as president of the international (non-US) business until 2008, when he returned home to take up the top job at CFS GAM until that business was sold the Japanese in December 2018. He is one of the founders of the CFA Institute in Australia, and an immediate past director of the global CFA organisation. He also has some other non-executive directorships, including family office Omnia Capital, the Sydney Theatre Company and the Zero Childhood Cancer Board.
He said that he had known several of the Yarra Capital directors, including the TA Associates people, and liked the way they were looking to expand the business. “I also liked the fact that they were independent,” he said.
Yarra Capital, formed in 2017 after a management buyout of Goldman Sachs Asset Management in Australia, has a range of Australian equities funds, a global small-cap fund, a credit fund and two income funds and multi-asset and hybrid strategies.