The first email below was sent to Bridgewater’s clients on October 4, 2022, referencing the second email which was sent to employees earlier that day.
Below please find a note we sent earlier today to the company announcing that we finalized our transition. As you may recall, in February we informed you that we had finalized the transition agreement, and between then and now, the firm and Ray worked to complete the necessary and required legal, regulatory and investor requirements. With this final step now complete, I wanted you to be among the first to know.
As we’ve done all along, we have updated you on the steps we’ve taken toward completing our multiyear journey to evolve from a founder-led boutique to a lasting, employee-driven institution. Over the years, Ray has transitioned day-to-day management to new leaders, investment oversight to the Investment Committee that he mentored as CIO the past two years, and majority ownership of the firm to a broader set of shareholders, while remaining a meaningful owner. This last mile of the transition was a culmination of several important milestones which made this possible — most notably, in December, we announced the formation of our Operating Board of Directors (made up of our co-CIOs, Outside Directors, Employee Directors and CEOs) and in January we announced the Board’s selection of Nir Bar Dea and Mark Bertolini as our co-CEOs. With this transition now complete, coupled with our strong alpha performance, this year has been a very rewarding time for the firm; one which we are privileged to share with you.
Bridgewater’s strength has and will always remain a deep bench of investment and advisory talent. The sum of those individuals, led by our co-CEOs and co-CIOs, Greg Jensen and Bob Prince, and the systematization of our investment process, is bigger and more impactful than any individual. As Bridgewater embarks on its newest chapter, we are honored to write it with you.
Kyle Delaney, President and Chief Commercial Officer
The transition of Bridgewater from Ray is done!
Since our February announcement below, we’ve been working through the many legal steps needed to close the transaction. On Friday, we finished the work, signed the papers, and closed. The control of the company now sits with our Operating Board. There is nothing left to do on Ray’s transition. It’s done.
Friday’s step followed Ray’s transition out of management in 2017, the formation of our Investment Committee in the summer of 2020 (led by Greg, Bob, and several other key investors and asset class leads) and Ray’s shift to focus on mentoring that group then. Since we formed the Investment Committee, we’ve had strong performance across our alpha strategies, delivering for those clients when they needed it, with our next generation leading the charge.
It’s hard to overstate the importance of this moment for Bridgewater and Ray. Ray founded Bridgewater 47 years ago and, over a decade ago, set out on this journey to transition it. This process wasn’t easy and we didn’t always agree, but together, we’ve now finished something that very few firms or founders have accomplished, shifting from being a founder-led boutique to being an enduring institution led successfully by the next generation. Looking forward, Ray will continue as a CIO mentor, an Operating Board member, and will remain an important part of our community. On a personal note, on behalf of our entire community, we’d like to thank Ray for all that he’s done and is doing for Bridgewater and to assure him that we’re all going to work our hearts out to make the next chapter at least as good as the previous.
For new employees who don’t know what all this is about or for long-tenured employees who want to go down memory lane, we just updated our website to include a page about Our Founder.
Nir Bar Dea & Mark Bertolini, Co-CEOs
Cc: Mike McGavick; Mark Bertolini; Ray Dalio; Bob Prince; Greg Jensen
Subject: Bridgewater’s Completed Transition
Sent: Tuesday, February 15th, 2022
We’re very excited to inform you that last night Ray, Bob, Greg, and Mark and I (on behalf of Management) signed the binding legal documents which codify the transition of control of Bridgewater from Ray to the Operating Board of Directors. While we need to complete some regulatory steps and investor notifications in the coming months, this important milestone serves as the culmination of a decade-long journey and solidifies Bridgewater’s transition from a founder-led firm to a lasting employee-owned and controlled institution. This is a big moment for Bridgewater — especially for Ray — and marks the beginning of a new relationship between Bridgewater’s founder and the company he has led for so long. Such a transition is often described as one of the most notorious leadership challenges in business — but through our shared love of and commitment to Bridgewater and to each other, today we mark a fulfillment of that promise and the beginning of a new era for Bridgewater. Ray will still serve as a member of the Operating Board, CIO Mentor, and continue to lead his investment research.
This moment also arrives at an incredibly exciting time for Bridgewater — with performance off to a strong start so far, the recently announced Operating Board of Directors in place, and a successful leadership transition, we believe are well-positioned to continue to deliver for our clients as we work to have a lasting impact on the industry and on the world.
As we often do at times such as these, we wanted to quickly bring the community together (at 4:30pm today) to acknowledge this important milestone and hear from Ray, Bob, Greg, Mark and me. (Calendar invite to follow this notification-come ready to toast!).
With excitement and gratitude,
Nir, Mark and Mike
Nir Bar Dea & Mark Bertolini, Co-CEOs
Mike McGavick, Chairman, Operating Board of Directors