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CDPQ to restructure international presence with new head of global operations

July 31, 2020. Print article

said Friday it is working on restructuring its global operations, complete with the hire of a high-profile diplomat to be the head of its global strategy.

CDPQ President and CEO Charles Emond said that this move follows the fund manager’s recent five-year expansion to build out multidisciplinary teams in Europe, Asia, the United States and Latin America, which helped to increase the investor’s international exposure by $140 billion.

Montreal-based CDPQ has appointed veteran lawyer Marc-André Blanchard to the role of executive vice president and head of CDPQ Global. Since 2016, Blanchard has served as an ambassador and permanent representative of Canada to the in New York. He is also no stranger to executive work, having been the chairman and CEO of McCarthy Tétrault, a large Canadian firm, from 2010 to 2016.

Blanchard will be responsible for the fund manager’s three main regional hubs outside Canada, those being the United States and Latin America, Europe and Asia Pacific regions.

CDPQ is a long-term investor that manages numerous international funds, investing in private equity, infrastructure and real estate in addition to major financial markets on a global scale. As of the end of 2019, it had CA$340.1 billion (about $254 billion) in assets under management.

Blanchard said that he is looking forward to working with CDPQ’s different teams in order to better position the investor as a preferred choice on a global scale, and to continue the existing trends CDPQ has worked toward as of late. He will also serve on CDPQ’s Investment-Risk Committee.

“At the U.N., I witnessed first hand the impact that investors can have on major issues around the world, both through their choice of partners and investments and in advancing key themes, such as climate change and sustainable investment,” Blanchard said. 

Anita George, who previously served as executive vice president of strategic partnerships for growth markets, will serve under Blanchard in her new expanded role of executive vice president and deputy head of CDPQ Global.

“Under Marc-André's leadership, and with Anita's support, this new structure will allow us to continue diversifying our portfolio and go to market with a cross-functional and global view, backed by strong leadership in Montréal and strengthened responsibilities in our key regional hubs and satellite offices,” Emond said.

Blanchard will begin work at CDPQ on Sept. 8.