American Century has boosted its exchange-traded fund (ETF) capabilities with the hires of two more team members as it gears up for its first foray into the market.
The $175 billion asset manager has hired Rene Casis as a portfolio manager and Sean Walker as an ETF specialist.
Casis will be portfolio manager of the American Century Stoxx US Quality Value ETF, which is set to launch by the end of this quarter.
He was previously a partner at 55 Capital Partners, for a year, after leaving BlackRock where he had a seven-year career, most recently as an iShares equity smart beta strategist.
Walker joins the firm directly from iShares, where he had a three-year career as an investment management consultant for wirehouses. Previously he held roles at Northern Trust and AMG.
‘Rene and Sean will play a critical role as we establish American Century as an ETF destination, a company priority for 2018 and beyond,’ said Peruvemba Satish, portfolio manager and director of global analytics at American Century.
Casis and Walker are the latest additions to the recently-created American Century ETF team to have a background at BlackRock.
In November 2017, the firm hired Matt Lewis as vice president and head of ETF implementation and capital markets. He was previously head of iShares broker-dealer execution services for America at Blackrock.
One exception to this pattern is Ed Rosenberg, the firm's head of ETFs, who was hired in June 2017 from Northern Trust and previously worked at Vanguard.
American Century filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission for the index-based American Century Stoxx US Quality Value ETF and the actively-managed American Century Corporate Bond ETF last year.
A spokesman for the firm confirmed that these two funds will launch by the end of March of this year.
The firm has also announced a partnership with semi-transparent active ETF provider Precidian, which is part owned by Legg Mason.
Precidian has struck deals with JP Morgan Asset Management, BlackRock and Nationwide to offer their strategies via an ETF structure that does not disclose holdings on a daily basis, but retains the liquidity and tax advantages of the vehicle.