BNY Mellon Names Former Visa Executive Scharf CEO and Chairman -- Update

By Justin BaerFeaturesDow Jones Newswires

Bank of New York Mellon Corp. named former Visa Inc. and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. executive Charles Scharf as its chairman and chief executive, as the trust bank looks to jump-start growth and embrace the technological changes sweeping through the financial-services industry.

Mr. Scharf, 52 years old, replaces Gerald Hassell. The 65-year-old Mr. Hassell will remain chairman at BNY Mellon until Dec. 31, when he will hand the title to Mr. Scharf.

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Mr. Scharf is among the cadre of deputies who followed James Dimon from Citigroup Inc. to Bank One Corp. to J.P. Morgan. Mr. Scharf rose to run the latter firm's retail-banking business. He joined San Francisco-based Visa in 2012 and ran the payments network until last year, when he resigned to be closer to his family in New York.

Mr. Hassell spent his entire career at BNY Mellon, which grew to become one of the largest custodians and money managers in the world. The bank now has more than $30 trillion in assets under custody, and runs a collection of investment managers that oversee a combined $1.7 trillion.

Promoted to chairman and CEO in 2011, Mr. Hassell inherited a company still coming to terms with the lasting effects of a financial downturn. Low interest rates crimped profits, and the bank's margins lagged behind those of rivals State Street Corp. and Northern Trust Corp.

Trian Fund Management LP, the activist investor, took a stake BNY Mellon in June 2014 and sought cost cuts. In October 2014, BNY Mellon executives unveiled plans to shed $500 million in expenses through 2017. That December, the company added Trian's Ed Garden to its board.

"As CEO, he refreshed the company's strategy and successfully executed against a publicly-stated 2014-to-2017, three-year Investor Day plan designed to create value for the firm's clients, investors and employees, " said Joseph Echevarria, BNY Mellon's lead director.

BNY Mellon's shares have climbed 32% in the past year, underperforming the benchmark KBW Bank Index's 43% gain.

Last month, the trust bank replaced Suresh Kumar, its chief information officer, with former Bank of America Corp. executive Bridget Engle.

Write to Justin Baer at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

July 17, 2017 09:17 ET (13:17 GMT)