Exclusive: HarbourVest’s listed arm loses COO

Stuart Howard will become CEO of a private financial services-focused company in the UK

HarbourVest Partners has lost its chief operating officer, Stuart Howard, for its European listed products division, PEI has learnt.

Howard, who joined HarbourVest in 2012, left on the 31 October this year, a spokesperson for the firm confirmed.

Based in London, Howard was responsible for overseeing HarbourVest's role in the operations of HarbourVest Global Private Equity Limited and HarbourVest Senior Loans Europe, two listed investment companies managed by HarbourVest Partners.

HarbourVest declined to comment specifically on what Howard will do next, other than that he will take up a “CEO role with a private financial services-focused company operating in the UK”. Howard could not be reached for comment at press time.

“Senior professionals at HarbourVest Partners will continue to manage all aspects of the company business and its relationships with shareholders until a successor is appointed, at which time a further announcement will be made,” HarbourVest said in an emailed statement.

Peter Wilson and Brooks Zug, HarbourVest managing directors and non-independent directors of HVPE, will remain involved in all aspects of the company’s business, as will the chairman, Sir Michael Bunbury, with a particular emphasis on shareholder relations, HarbourVest said. Richard Hickman, based in London, and Billy Macaulay, based in Boston, also work full time on HVPE.

Howard made “a considerable contribution to the success of HVPE since he became chief operating officer in January 2012 and the board wishes him well for the future”, HarbourVest added.

Howard joined HarbourVest from 3i, where he spent over ten years, most recently as chief operating officer for Asia and the Americas. He also held senior positions within 3i Infrastructure plc and 3i’s Quoted Private Equity plc. Prior to joining 3i in 2001, Howard, a chartered accountant, worked at Credit Agricole and Deloitte.