The firm, which was formerly Standard Life Aberdeen, had a reshuffle of its management team in July 2021 as it prepared for the retirement of its chief investment officer.
Former CIO Rod Paris retired from the role at the end of 2021 after nearly 20 years at the firm.
At the time, in light of his retirement, the group said it would reorganise its structure, dividing its investment management team into public markets, real assets, solutions and central investments.
However, it announced today that Branner would be taking over the role and reporting to Chris Demetriou and Rene Buehlmann, chief executive officers of investments.
Branner joins from European pension investors APG Asset Management, where, as CIO, he was responsible for investment leadership and oversight of public and private markets.
Prior to that, he served as CEO and CIO of Swedish SEB Investment Management in Stockholm where he was responsible for the overall investment process at the firm and its broad range of funds and institutional mandates.
He has also held other senior investment roles, including CIO at Fortis Investments’ multi management division in London and managing director of IKANO Fund Management in Luxembourg.
Branner said:“I am delighted to be joining Abrdn at such an important time. Having led different teams and offerings over the years I am familiar with the scale of the ambition that Abrdn has.
“As a passionate advocate for sustainable long-term investing, and the wider positive impacts the industry can deliver, I am looking forward to being part of a firm that has a strong heritage in sustainable investing and exploring how we best support our clients in a challenged world.”
In his new role, Branner will focus on re-shaping Abrdn’s investments vector and will ensure that the firm builds a culture of innovation, learning and continuous improvement across its global investment teams.
Buehlmann said: “Peter’s experience will be fundamental in driving performance, further modernising our investment approaches and implementing future-fit investment technologies.
“Having led investment teams at asset managers and asset owners, Peter is ideally suited to work with our asset class heads and the broader leadership team to develop client-led investment propositions.”
The firm said it is placing more emphasis on simplifying the product offering, increasing efficiency and improving investment performance.
Demetriou added: “Peter’s joining marks a new chapter in our transformation. Over the past two years we have made great strides in reshaping our investments business.