BlackRock names BuzzFeed executive as marketing chief

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Frank Cooper, who spent the last 18 months as chief marketing officer and chief creative officer at BuzzFeed, plans to join the New York asset manager in January, according to an internal memo seen by The Wall Street Journal. He will report to chief executive Larry Fink, who sent…

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Frank Cooper, who spent the last 18 months as chief marketing officer and chief creative officer at BuzzFeed, plans to join the New York asset manager in January, according to an internal memo seen by The Wall Street Journal.

He will report to chief executive Larry Fink, who sent the internal memo and highlighted Cooper’s experience using “new marketing technologies to help organisations – from global consumer companies to technology startups – to drive growth”. Cooper is set to lead a marketing team that focuses on research and analytics, digital marketing and branding, the memo said.

At BuzzFeed, Cooper oversaw a creative services team and helped create sponsored content. He joined BuzzFeed after more than a decade at PepsiCo and worked previously at AOL, Warner Bros and as an entertainment lawyer in Los Angeles.

BlackRock started as an institutional money management business and has tried in recent years to diversify its business mix and find new ways to sell funds to retail investors. The firm is currently focused on gathering more assets from these retail, or individual investors, in part by using its proprietary Aladdin investment and risk-management technology.

Retail assets represented 12% of assets under management at BlackRock at the end of the third quarter, but 34% of its traditional investment fees. Its iShares exchange-traded fund unit accounted for 26% of assets and 37% of fees with its institutional business representing the balance.

The firm has decentralised some of its reporting lines in recent months with heads of the firm’s regional retail businesses reporting to local executives in Europe, Asia and the Americas, rather than one global head.

Cooper will join BlackRock’s global executive committee. He partly succeeds the company’s longtime global head of marketing and communications, Linda Robinson, who is moving to a vice chairman role, the firm told employees in April.

Global head of corporate communications Jim Badenhausen, who has also served as interim chief marketing officer for the last two years and previously reported to Robinson, will now report to Fink.

Write to Sarah Krouse at sarah.krouse@wsj.com

This article was published by The Wall Street Journal


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