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Willis Towers Watson appoints head of real assets

Karen Dolenec is taking responsibility for the group after Damien Loveday, previously the head of diversifying strategies, left the firm in August.

Willis Towers Watson promoted Karen Dolenec from senior investment consultant to head of real assets, the London-based firm said Monday.

Dolenec, who joined the advisory and investment firm in 2014, will continue to oversee real estate, infrastructure and natural resources. Before her time at Willis Towers Watson, she was a founding member and managing director at Terra Firma Capital Partners, a European buyout firm also based in London.

Dolenec’s promotion comes after Damien Loveday, previously the head of diversifying strategies, left the firm in August to become an investor relations managing director at Angelo, Gordon & Co. To fill Loveday’s role, Willis Towers Watson also moved Sara Rejal up from senior investment consultant to become head of liquid alternatives, overseeing hedge funds, alternative beta, reinsurance and multi-asset strategies.

“The new leadership structure of our Diversifying Strategies function will enable us to better align research and portfolio construction, with an even more positive influence on improving client outcomes,” Luba Nikulina, the firm’s global head of manager research, said in a statement Monday. “We aim to achieve this through the continued development of differentiated solutions, spanning a variety of return drivers and bringing more diversity into client portfolios in the environment of low asset returns and general macroeconomic uncertainty.”

Willis Towers Watson Investment has about $75 billion of assets under management, according to the statement.