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People in the News: Risky Business

PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi gets personal at Yale, soccer’s Wayne Rooney minds his head, former U.S. Treasury secretary Bob Rubin warms up to climage change and more.

Wayne Rooney Has a Head for Numbers

Wayne Rooney’s head — the next frontier of financial innovation? When the English soccer star appeared for Manchester United earlier this season in padded headgear, few realized that he was providing an oblique advertisement for the technological prowess of financial-data giant Bloomberg. After Rooney gashed his head open in a freak training accident last September, Claudio Storelli offered to send Man United doctors samples of the protective headband made by Storelli Sports, the small Brooklyn, New York–based sportswear company he founded. Rooney returned to action that week and wore the Storelli band, which retails for $60, for the next month. Storelli, 31, also runs the Bloomberg app store, which launched in late 2012, a job he says he earned on the back of his “track record in creating new businesses” such as Storelli Sports. Feigning indignation, he notes that Rooney has provided “no knock-on business to Bloomberg” from his use of the headband. — Aaron Timms

Indra Nooyi’s Personal Brand

Being the face of a global corporation has its drawbacks. Just ask Indra Nooyi, chairman and CEO of food and beverage giant PepsiCo, who spoke during January’s business, society and leadership conference at her alma mater, the Yale School of Management. “When you become a CEO, you are no longer your own person; you are public property,” Nooyi, 58, told a crowd of 350. The master’s grad in public and private management, who began her PepsiCo career two decades ago as a strategic planner, recalled replacing former chief executive Steven Reinemund in 2006. “All of a sudden a brand was born,” Nooyi said of taking charge at the Purchase, New York–based corporation, which posted $65.5 billion in revenue for 2012 through 22 units, including Frito-Lay, Gatorade and Quaker. She’s putting her personal brand to good use with PepsiCo initiatives such as Performance with Purpose, billed by the Yale conference as “a promise to do what’s right for people and the planet.” — Frances Denmark

High Hopes for Randy Simmons

Washington State Liquor Control Board deputy director and former pension executive Randy Simmons knows it’s not easy being green. In November 2012, when the state legislature passed a law opening the door to legalization of recreational marijuana, it gave the board a year to hash out the details. Simmons, 61, who’s overseeing Initiative 502, bluntly assesses the progress to date: “We’re all walking through the shadows here, trying to figure out where we’re going in the long run.” Named to his current post last June, he spent more than two decades with Sunset Life, then based in Olympia, Washington, as a pension administrator and vice president before becoming a state government employee; he joined the WSLCB in 2002. Simmons sees a potential tax windfall for Washington, whose residents consumed 165 metric tons of illicit dope last year. As the state follows in Colorado’s footsteps, trade magazine High Times just announced the HT Growth Fund, a private equity vehicle that aims to raise $100 million for pot-based investments. — Ben Baris

Bob Rubin’s Risk Committee

Climate change is “the issue of our day” and an “existential risk,” former U.S. Treasury secretary and White House economic adviser Bob Rubin warned last month’s Investor Summit on Climate Risk at the United Nations in New York. Rubin, 75, is now counseling environmental activist Tom Steyer, founder of San Francisco–based hedge fund firm Farallon Capital Management; Hank Paulson, former CEO of Goldman Sachs and Treasury secretary under George W. Bush; and billionaire former New York City mayor Mike Bloomberg, who are spearheading an initiative to quantify the risk that climate change poses to business. The resulting report should appear in the second quarter. “Only in the political arena can you get the magnitude of response” needed to tackle climate change, Rubin — who once ran the merger arbitrage desk at Goldman and was Steyer’s first boss on Wall Street — told the UN gathering. Winning in Washington these days means money; given his three comrades’ deep pockets, a super PAC is almost inevitable. — Imogen Rose-Smith

John Havens’s Life after Volcker

John Havens’s career arc mirrors the rise of the hedge fund industry. Havens spent almost 20 years at Morgan Stanley, where he became head of institutional equities. In 2005 he and Vikram Pandit founded New York hedge fund firm Old Lane, which Citigroup bought for $800 million two years later; before they left Citi in 2012, Pandit was CEO and Havens was president and COO. Last month Havens, 59, announced he was joining $5.6 billion, New York–based credit-focused hedge fund and alternative-investment manager Napier Park Global Capital as nonexecutive chairman. Also acquired by Citi in 2007, Napier spun out last year as its former owner sought to comply with the Volcker rule, which limits banks’ investments in private equity and hedge funds. Banks seeking to build a hedge fund business will now probably struggle more than ever to compete with independent firms. “We have gone from a talent and opportunity arbitrage to a capital and regulation arbitrage,” Havens says. “One is cyclical and one is structural.” — I.R–S.

Gerrit Zalm Offers a Dutch Treat

Give ABN Amro chairman Gerrit Zalm full marks for self-deprecation. During a cabaret at last month’s annual meeting for 7,000 employees of the Amsterdam-based bank, Zalm took the stage dressed as a brothel madam, resplendent in a red wig, blue gown and cape, gold lamé gloves and female, er, props. The 61-year-old former Dutch Finance minister channeled his make-believe sister, Priscilla, to drive home a point: Bankers need to act more like prostitutes by putting their customers first. The amiable Zalm meant no disrespect to the world’s oldest profession, which doesn’t raise eyebrows in liberal Holland, where it’s legal. He appears to be enjoying the job the Dutch government gave him in 2008: helping restructure €394.4 billion ($534.5 billion) ABN Amro, which was nationalized after its disastrous $100 billion takeover the previous year by a consortium that included Royal Bank of Scotland, Holland’s Fortis and Spain’s Banco Santander. — F.D.

Hands Up for Hans Hufschmind

Since big institutions began putting money in hedge funds, managers and investors have sought a fund-of-hedge-funds product that can produce a low-cost indexlike return. Now turning his hand to the task is Hans Hufschmid, best known as a principal of ill-fated quantitative and fixed-income arbitrage hedge fund firm Long-Term Capital Management, which all but collapsed in 1998 after overleveraging on bonds. Hufschmid, 58, who began his career on the trading desk of Salomon Brothers and co-ran LTCM’s London office, went on to become a leading figure in hedge fund back office and administration, forming GlobeOp Financial Services, which SS&C Technologies acquired in 2012 for $940 million. His new firm, New York–based Altß Partners, which he founded last year and is currently raising capital, uses a unique system to select managers from its proprietary database comprising thousands of funds. To date, Hufschmid says, the firm has raised around $100 million and is invested in 13 funds. — I.R–S.

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