Bill Gross sued Pacific Investment Management Co. and parent Allianz SE for “hundreds of millions of dollars,” claiming he was wrongfully pushed out as the bond giant’s chief investment officer by a “cabal” of executives seeking a bigger slice of the bonus pool.
“Driven by a lust for power, greed, and a desire to improve their own financial position and reputation at the expense of investors and decency, a cabal of Pimco managing directors plotted to drive founder Bill Gross out of Pimco in order to take, without compensation, Gross’s percentage ownership in the profitability of Pimco,” according to a copy of the complaint seen by Bloomberg. The complaint alleges that Pimco executives’ “improper, dishonest, and unethical behavior must now be exposed.”
The complaint’s filing in California State court couldn’t be immediately confirmed in court records. Michael Reid, a spokesman for Pimco, declined to comment.
The complaint presents a detailed account of the events leading up to Gross’s departure on Sept. 26 last year, a move that rattled bond markets and prompted record redemptions at what once was the world’s largest mutual fund. It portrays Gross as an advocate for lower fees and traditional, lower-risk bond investments who was pushed out gradually by other executives seeking to expand into riskier assets and higher-fee products.
Gross, 71, claims the Newport Beach, California-based firm owes him at least “hundreds of millions” for wrongful termination, breach of written contract, and breach of covenant of good faith and fair dealing, according to the document.