Sara Petrcich, BMO GAM
Sara Petrcich, head of BMO GAM’s ETF & Structured Solutions team. Photo courtesy BMO Global Asset Management

Kevin Gopaul has left BMO Global Asset Management.

Gopaul, who was president and chief commercial officer of BMO ETFs and BMO Global Asset Management, left the bank Thursday “to pursue other opportunities,” a spokesperson for the bank said in an email to Investment Executive. “We recognize the significant contributions Kevin made during his tenure at BMO and wish him well as he embarks on the next phase of his career.”

Gopaul is replaced by Sara Petrcich, who is now head of BMO GAM’s ETF & Structured Solutions team. She was previously managing director and head of synthetic asset management with BMO GAM, and has more than 20 years of experience in derivatives, structured products trading and counterparty credit risk, the bank said.

“Sara is highly experienced in building new product businesses with a strong risk management lens,” BMO said in a statement. “[She] will continue to strengthen BMO’s leadership in the ETF market and expand BMO’s investment capabilities.”

Gopaul joined BMO in April 2009 to help launch its ETF business, and steered it through a period of explosive growth. The firm launched four ETFs in June 2009, making it the only big Canadian bank at the time to offer the products.

By the end of 2012, BMO ETFs commanded 16.1% of total Canadian ETF assets under management, second only to BlackRock’s iShares lineup (BlackRock had acquired Claymore Investments Inc. earlier that year).

Today, BMO ETFs maintains its second-place position at 23.9% of market share and $86 billion in AUM as of July 31, according to National Bank Financial Inc.

Gopaul, who had long served as the public face of BMO GAM, told Investment Executive in 2018 that he attributed his firm’s market leadership to the bank’s early decision not to allow concerns about cannibalizing its mutual fund lineup detract from its goal of developing a full lineup of ETFs.

Prior to joining BMO, Gopaul was a portfolio manager with Barclays Global Investors.

Petrcich joined BMO in 2021 from Bank of Nova Scotia, where she worked for nearly 16 years in risk management and derivatives. At BMO GAM, she is the executive sponsor for diversity, equity and inclusion.