BlueBay expands EM team with EM illiquid hire

Specialist fixed income manager, BlueBay Asset Management (BlueBay), has appointed Mihai Florian in a newly created role as Senior Portfolio Manager, to further develop the firm's emerging market debt (EM) illiquid corporate credit strategies.

Based in London, Mihai reports to Polina Kurdyavko, Head of Emerging Markets and will be responsible for developing BlueBay’s capabilities in illiquid emerging market corporate credit through co-investment opportunities and new closed-ended investment strategies.

The team believes there is an increasing opportunity to invest in EM illiquid assets, driven by ongoing issuance of loans and other illiquid instruments in relatively unpenetrated and inefficient markets at a time when borrowing demand remains high and participating banks need to reduce risk, given their capital constraints. They believe reduced credit appetite by banks has led to exacerbated volatility and credit dislocation, presenting compelling investment opportunities for those in a position to identify and exploit these temporary mis-pricings.

Speaking about Mihai’s appointment, Polina Kurdyavko, says: “Mihai’s extensive experience and skillset complements that of the wider team and will enhance our ability to invest in illiquid corporate credit opportunities. By leveraging our robust platform of analysts and strategists, he will play a significant role in helping us provide clients with new investment opportunities in a growing asset class.”
Before joining BlueBay, Mihai was a founding partner for the credit strategies at Helios Investment Partners, an EM private markets investment manager. Prior to this, he was Head of Structuring for Fixed Income, Currencies and Commodities for EM at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, following the role of Head of EM Structuring and Solutions at JPMorgan Securities. Mihai has also held roles at Merrill Lynch International and Citigroup.
In addition to Mihai’s appointment, the EM team has been investing in new talent. Recent external senior hires include corporate analysts, Matias Vammalle, formerly at Argo Capital, and Vishal Iyer, formerly at JP Morgan.
Polina says: “EM, and particularly EM corporate credit, is an evolving asset class and an important part of BlueBay’s investment capabilities. To remain at the forefront of investing in the opportunities it presents, we have appointed experienced analysts to deepen our coverage and continue to strengthen our mosaic approach to investing in the asset class.”
During 2020, BlueBay plans to launch new investment strategies within the EM illiquid corporate credit space, complementing the existing suite of liquid credit offerings.