The Investment Company Institute, a major trade association representing the mutual funds industry, named Eric J. Pan president and chief executive on Tuesday.
Pan, a former official at the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, will take the helm at ICI Nov. 9. He replaces Paul Schott Stevens, who is retiring after 16 years leading the organization.
The ICI is one of the most influential interest groups shaping financial services policy. It represents the regulated investment fund industry, including mutual funds, exchange-traded funds and unit investment trusts, in the United States and similar funds globally. It has a staff of 174 and is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices in London and Hong Kong as well.
“Eric Pan’s global experience, deep financial and regulatory insight, and strong commitment to investor protection and service uniquely qualify him to lead ICI into its ninth decade,” ICI chairman George C.W. Gatch, chief executive of J.P. Morgan Asset Management, said in a statement. “The board is confident that he will continue to advance the strong organization that Paul Stevens helped build and lead it to navigate the new challenges and opportunities ahead.”
Pan, 47, joined the SEC in 2011 to head a newly formed unit overseeing international regulatory policy following the financial crisis. In 2015, he moved to the CFTC as director of the office of international affairs. From 2010 to 2015, Pan was director of the Heyman Center on Corporate Governance and associate professor of law at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. Immediately before joining ICI, Pan was a managing director at Rock Creek Global Advisors, a Washington-based international economic policy advisory firm.
He takes over at ICI as mutual funds are continuing to see strong growth and facing pressure to reduce fees. Fund disclosures and environmental, social and governance investing also are drawing greater regulatory scrutiny.
“This is an exciting time to join ICI and its members as they navigate a robust policy and regulatory agenda,” Pan said in a statement. “I’m eager to jump into the important work of the Institute, including our efforts to help modernize fund disclosures, improve the way the industry communicates around critical issues like ESG investing, and ensure international regulators properly consider the experiences of funds and their investors during recent market stress due to COVID-19.”
Under Stevens, ICI expanded its global reach and bolstered its research capability. Its U.S. members manage $26.9 trillion in assets and have about 100 million shareholders. Its global members manage about $7.8 trillion in assets.
The organization is a major force on regulatory policy in Washington. In the current election cycle, it has contributed $1.7 million to political campaigns for federal lawmakers, according to Federal Election Commission filings. In 2019, ICI spent approximately $4.7 million lobbying Congress, according to the Office of the House Clerk.
The ICI opposed the Obama administration’s fiduciary rule for investment advice in retirement accounts. It has been a strong proponent of the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest, the new broker advice standard that was implemented in June.
“ICI is an outstanding research organization and the leading voice for regulated funds and the shareholders they serve,” Pan said in a statement. “I look forward to working with ICI’s members and top-flight staff to be a forceful and effective advocate for the interests of funds and their investors around the world.”
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