In the weeks that followed, Gross tried to close ranks. He spent more than 20 minutes before a firm-wide meeting to discuss the media scrutiny that had beset the company, a speech in which he disparaged El-Erian, according to two people. When he ended to a standing ovation from the audience, including Hodge and Ivascyn, at least one executive declined to rise. Thimons, a managing director outspoken in his objections to Gross’s leadership, disagreed with his comments and refused to stand, according to a person who was present. El-Erian’s departure had prompted media scrutiny and reports of clashes between El-Erian and Gross. The Wall Street Journal cited one example where Gross complained that El-Erian wouldn’t let him run the firm’s entire $2 trillion in assets…To stop the reports, Gross set up interrogations of members of the investment committee, managing directors, and lower-ranking money managers. He carried around a three-ring binder of printed-out e-mails and hand-written notes to find out who was talking to the press. Among his suspects were Balls, a former journalist, and Thimons, the executive who had remained seated during the standing ovation and who had organized a going-away party for El-Erian. — Bloomberg News, December 3, 2014
Security camera footage of the office break room showing a young trader offering El-Erian a bite of his sandwich?
Eyewitness accounts of a member of the investment committee shaking El-Erian’s hand on his last day of work?
Chicken scratch that said something about how he was almost sure he saw two executive assistants mocking the birthday party he’d held for Bob The Cat last year. He was on the other side of the room so “not positive” but can read lips so pretty certain?
Bill Gross is a legendary bond investor who co-founded Pacific Investment Management in 1971. He once referred to himself as the Secretariat (as in, the thoroughbred horse) of investing and, at PIMCO, was known for discouraging employees from speaking to him or looking him in the eye. In 2014, he joined Janus Capital Management after a series of, let’s just call them “incidents” led senior employees to tell management is us or this guy.
Continue through the pages below to read the saga of legendary American financier, Bill Gross.
The compensation committee keeps the minutes of its meetings private, but considering that Gross far surpassed any expectations parent company Allianz might’ve set in the aforementioned areas, it seems obvious crows1 and alienation figured significantly in his 2013 pay. Read more »
When Mr Gross expressed frustration with his company and suggested he may be looking for a new berth, Mr Weil promised to “move heaven and earth” to accommodate him at Janus. At the moment, that means furnishing a permanent office to Mr Gross’s liking in Newport Beach, California, just yards from Pimco. Rather than giving him a large team to manage and a desk on an open plan trading floor, Mr Gross will work behind a closed door. The aim is to prevent the kinds of outbursts that upset many Pimco staff. Mr Weil says he “wouldn’t dispute” the characterisation that Mr Gross has to be managed with kid gloves. “Bill likes quiet time to think, and our job is to make this fun and successful for Bill so he does it for a long time.” [FT, related, related, related]
May 2014: “…during a meeting of about 20 Pimco executives at the firm’s investment committee, Mr. Gross halted Jeremie Banet, a French-born executive vice president and portfolio manager, while he was sharing his views. “I never understand what you’re saying,” Mr. Gross said, according to people in the room. “Ever.” A day after the exchange, Mr. Banet announced his resignation and said he planned to operate a food truck selling croque-monsieur sandwiches in Los Angeles. In an email, Mr. Banet said there was no connection between the meeting and his departure from Pimco. He said he has “enormous respect and admiration for Bill Gross.” September 2014: “Bill Gross is joining Janus Capital Group, effective September 29.” October 2014: “PIMCO has hired Jeremie Banet, who previously worked for the firm and will return as an Executive Vice President and Portfolio Manager for real return strategies, including Treasury Inflation Protected Securities (TIPS).” [WSJ, CNBC, Pimco via Matt]
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