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Lyxor dismisses ETF sale speculation as CEO exits

Lyxor Asset Management has appointed Lionel Paquin as chief executive after another high profile exit revived rumours its exchange traded fund (ETF) business is up for sale.  

Paquin replaces Inès de Dinechin, who leaves is leaving the Societe Generale-owned group, which controls some €75 billion (£61.7 billion) in assets under management.  

The news comes after significant upheaval at the firm, which saw chairman Alain Dubois leave for MSCI last June, while head Lyxor ETFs for the UK, Nordic region and Latin America, Claus Hein, also stepped down.

At the end of 2012 Simon Klein and Nizam Hamid, head and deputy head of the firm's European ETF business, quit.   

These departures sparked speculation Societe Generale was looking to offload Lyxor's ETF business, which runs €31.2 billion in assets. French asset manager Amundi was among those strongly linked with a bid.  

A spokesperson for Lyxor said in an interview with the Financial Times that de Dinechin's exit should not be read a precursor to a sale, adding that her departure was no indication the company 'needs to change its strategy'.

The spokesperson said: 'We fully understand that this is a legitimate question, but no matter how high the turnover, the results demonstrate the strength of our business.

'There are no problems with respect to the company’s atmosphere or business activity.'  

Paquin has held a number of senior roles at Lyxor since 2007 and has served as head of its Lyxor Managed Accounts Platform since 2011. Prior to this he held the positions of chief risk officer and head of internal control at the firm.

He has been with the Societe Generale group since June 2004.

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