Former HP CIOs Join OCIO Firm

Ken Frier and Gretchen Tai will spearhead the new west coast office of SECOR Asset Management.

Power Duo” and former HP CIOs Ken Frier and Gretchen Tai have joined outsourced-CIO (OCIO) provider and asset management firm SECOR Asset Management, the firm announced Thursday.

SECOR, a $41 billion manager with $172 million in fully discretionary assets, as of CIO’s 2016 OCIO Buyer’s Guide, has hired Frier and Tai as co-heads of its newly opened west coast office in the San Francisco Bay Area. They will report to Tony Kao, managing principal of the firm’s investment advisory and portfolio solutions businesses.

“As leading CIOs in the institutional investment world, Ken and Gretchen have served as trusted fiduciaries for decades, overseeing more than $100 billion in total plan assets for their constituents,” Kao said in a statement.

Frier most recently served as CIO of Atlas Capital Advisors, a San Francisco-based investment advisory firm. Tai stepped down from HP last May after six years as CIO. She had succeeded Frier in the role, which he held for nearly a decade before moving to CIO jobs at Stanford Management Company and the United Autoworkers pension.

The pair worked together at HP’s investment office from 2007 until Frier’s 2010 departure, and have since developed a “risk-managed, global equity strategy” that they will debut on SECOR’s platform, the firm said.

Tai and Frier previously promoted their new strategy, which emphasizes liquidity and diversification, in a co-authored paper published in March, titled “Improving the ‘Endowment Model’ Recipe.”

“Their investment philosophies and approach are very aligned with our own internal views and processes,” Kao said. “This shared vision, coupled with their deep understanding of the institutional framework and ongoing challenges clients face, creates a unique and powerful offering for our clients.”

Related: HP CIO Gretchen Tai Steps Down