Chimera Investment Corporation (“Chimera” or the “Company”) (NYSE:CIM) today announced leadership changes intended to strengthen the Company’s performance, and position the Company to navigate changing market dynamics.
- Phillip J. Kardis II, has been appointed Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. Mr. Kardis will also become a member of the Board of Directors as a Class III director and will stand for election to the Board at the Company’s 2023 Annual Meeting of Shareholders. Mr. Kardis has been actively involved in leadership of the Company, its operations, and its strategic initiatives since its founding in 2007, and has played a key role in structuring the Company’s securitization, financing and investment transactions. Mr. Kardis has been immersed in all aspects of the Company’s strategic planning, policies and transactions, including serving on the Valuation Committee and Investment Committee. Mr. Kardis has recognized expertise in mortgage REITs and structured transactions. He first served as the Company’s IPO and primary outside corporate and transactional counsel, and since 2015 as its Chief Legal Officer and Secretary. In addition to 26 years as an attorney, he has held senior positions in both the Legislative and Executive Branches of the Federal Government as well as in public and private corporations. Mr. Kardis succeeds Chief Executive Officer, Chief Investment Officer and Director Mohit Marria, who has stepped down from the Company and the Board, effective immediately.
- Choudhary A. Yarlagadda, President, Chief Operating Officer and member of the Chimera Board of Directors, has been appointed Co-Chief Investment Officer, effective immediately. Mr. Yarlagadda has played a critical role in all aspects of the Company’s investment strategy and execution and was a member of Chimera’s investment team at its founding. As President and Chief Operating Officer, he has been closely involved in the selection and structuring of the Company’s investments. Prior to joining Chimera as Chief Operating Officer in August 2015, when the Company internalized its management, and becoming its President in 2021, Mr. Yarlagadda was a Managing Director and Head of Structured Products for Annaly Capital Management since January 2008, where he was involved in the investment activities of Chimera. Earlier in his career, Mr. Yarlagadda served as a Director in Structured Credit Products at Credit Suisse and as a Vice President in the Fixed Income Mortgage Group at Nomura Securities International, Inc.
- Dan Thakkar, has been appointed Co-Chief Investment Officer, effective immediately. Mr. Thakkar joined Chimera as Chief Risk Officer in December 2020 from Genworth Financial, where he led the Fixed Income Trading Desk. Previously, Mr. Thakkar headed Trading for Genworth’s Structured Portfolio from 2008 to 2012, which included RMBS, CMBS and ABS. Mr. Thakkar also held roles of increasing responsibility at Hyperion Brookfield Asset Management from 2005 to 2008, one of the original asset managers of residential mortgage-backed security funds, where he traded RMBS and managed a Mortgage REIT fund.
As CEO, Mr. Kardis will focus on all aspects of business oversight, operations, strategic planning, policies and transactions and will work closely and collaboratively with Mr. Yarlagadda and Mr. Thakkar as they focus on setting and implementing the Company’s investment strategy.
Gerry Creagh, Chairman of the Chimera Board of Directors, said “With rapidly changing market dynamics and a vastly different environment than even twelve months ago, our Board is taking decisive and necessary action to strengthen business performance and drive improved results for our shareholders. With the separation of the CEO and CIO roles, we are returning to a leadership structure and division of responsibilities that served Chimera well for many years and is ideally suited for this environment. Phil is a well-respected and seasoned leader with both deep technical and domain expertise as well as strategic vision, and he is uniquely qualified to take on the role of CEO. In Choudhary and Dan, we have two executives who provide continuity and institutional knowledge of our firm, together with decades of industry and investment experience. The Board and I are confident that Chimera has the right leadership team to effectively navigate the current market environment and chart a path forward that should position Chimera to deliver consistent and sustainable results for shareholders well into the future.”
Mr. Creagh added, “Mohit has been with the Company since its founding and has played a key role in developing the Company’s franchise value as a leader in securitizing residential mortgage loans. The Board is grateful to Mohit for his contributions and wishes him well in his next chapter.”
Mr. Kardis commented, “I am honored to take on this role at such an important time for our company. We are proud to have delivered approximately $5.8 billion in dividends since our inception. At the same time, we recognize that there is work to be done to better position Chimera for the future. To that end, I am thrilled to have such talented investment professionals in Choudhary and Dan as part of the senior leadership team, providing continuity with respect to investment decision making. I look forward to collaborating with my colleagues and leaning on their respective expertise as we challenge ourselves to think creatively and execute on the potential ways in which we capitalize on our unique market position and strengths to deliver the capital returns that our valued shareholders expect.”
As previously announced on November 3, 2022, and on November 17, 2022, the Chimera Board of Directors declared fourth quarter of fiscal year 2022 preferred stock and common stock dividends, respectively.