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Lazard AM hires MENA unit from ING IM

US investment firm expands operations into the Middle East with Dubai office and host of senior appointments from rival.

Lazard AM hires MENA unit from ING IM

Lazard Asset Management has strengthened its presence in the Middle East with the appointment of a host of senior names from ING Investment Management.

The move has seen the US firm open an office in Dubai under Farah Foustok, formerly CEO and CIO for ING IM in the region.

She will serve as managing director and senior executive officer for Lazard’s MENA operations. Foustok will be responsible for growth and development of Lazard AM’s business in the region.

Also joining is portfolio manager Fadi Al Said, who will lead a five-person investment team with responsibility for Lazard’s MENA and Frontier Markets equity strategies for local and global clients.

Working alongside Al Said will be fund manager Walid Mourad, as well as research analysts Talal Noueihed, Jagdish Bathika and Sleiman Aboul Hosn, all of whom were formerly with ING IM.

Ashish Bhutani, chief executive officer of Lazard AM, said the new hires would help strengthen local knowledge and on-the-ground expertise in the region.

‘The addition of these highly regarded, locally based investment professionals, under the leadership of Farah Foustok and Fadi Al Said, will strengthen our presence in the region, expand our distribution and investment capabilities, and complement our emerging markets platform.’

Lazard Asset Management currently has an office in Bahrain, which opened in 2008, and has been managing assets, including Shariah-compliant mandates, for clients in the Middle East since 1992.

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