April 2, 2015 / 11:00 AM / in 2 years

Canaccord CEO Reynolds dies after falling ill during a triathlon

(Reuters) - Canadian financial services firm Canaccord Genuity Group Inc (CF.TO) said Chief Executive Paul Reynolds had died, three days after becoming ill while competing in a triathlon in Hawaii.

The 52-year old, who has led the company since August 2007, will be replaced by Chairman David Kassie, Canaccord said in a statement on Thursday.

Reynolds was competing in the Lavaman Waikoloa Triathlon on Sunday when he got into trouble during the swim portion of the race, the Globe and Mail said, citing a local news report.

Canaccord said on Monday that Reynolds had been hospitalized following a medical emergency and that Kassie would be interim CEO while Reynolds recovered.

Reynolds joined Canaccord as an investment adviser in 1985 and was president of the firm's European operations from 1999 to 2007.

Since he took over as CEO in 2007, Canaccord's sales have risen about 13 percent through fiscal 2014. But growth has slowed in the past two years.

Like other Canadian independent dealers, Canaccord has been hit hard by a combination of tighter regulatory requirements, tougher competition from bank-owned dealers, and a slump in activity from resource companies, which have traditionally been the backbone of the Canadian market.

Once known as Canaccord Financial, the firm changed its name following the acquisition of Genuity Capital in May 2010, the company's biggest acquisition under Reynolds.

Kassie was CEO of Genuity Capital at the time.

Canaccord's shares have lost about two-thirds of their value while Reynolds has been in charge, including an 18 percent fall in the past 12 months.

The shares closed at C$6.64 on Wednesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

(This story corrects to "two-thirds" from "a third" in the tenth paragraph)

Reporting By Manya Venkatesh in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D'Souza

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