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Magellan appoints new chief executive

Magellan Financial Group has named its new chief executive and managing director, hiring from the Future Fund.

Currently deputy chief investment officer, public markets at Future Fund, David George will take on the top job at embattled Magellan from August.

In addition to the chief executive role, he will become managing director of the Magellan board and Magellan Asset Management, the group's main subsidiary.

He will join on a base salary of $1.8 million per annum, including superannuation, which will increase by 3% each financial year. He also received a signing bonus of $600,000; half payable at signing of the agreement, the other half to be paid after six months. His short-term incentives are capped at 100% of his base salary.

George has been with Future Fund for more than 14 years and has also held roles with Mercer and RBC Royal Bank. In his current role, George oversees more than $170 billion and 25 employees.

George said he considers the appointment an honour and he is looking forward to getting started.

"I have long admired Magellan and the role it plays in safeguarding and growing the wealth of its investors across the world," he said.

Magellan chair Hamish McLennan said, as an external hire, George brings "an outstanding investment management pedigree". He added that the board was unanimous that George is the right candidate.

Kirsten Morton, who has been acting in the chief executive role since Brett Cairns' sudden departure late last year, will step into the role of chief operating officer. She will also retain her role as chief financial officer. She will continue as chief executive until George joins.

George has his work cut out for him, as Magellan battles outflows and recovers from negative commentary around the departure of founder and chief investment officer Hamish Douglass.

In its most recent funds under management update, published this week, Magellan reported a further $1.4 billion drop in FUM during the month of April. In March it saw $1.1 billion in net outflows, while about $5 billion was lost in a single fortnight prior to that.

In September 2021, Magellan boasted $113.3 billion in FUM. As at April 29, it has $68.6 billion.

Read more: MagellanFuture FundMagellan Financial GroupDavid GeorgeHamish McLennanMercerRBC Royal BankKirsten Morton