Pacific Investment Management (Pimco), Bill Gross’ bond firm that’s expanding into stocks, named Melissa Tuttle as global head of equity trading and added staff in its latest effort to bolster the business.

Iain McNaught, Simon Peters, Sean Heymann and Aylon Ben-Shlomo will join Pimco’s global equities teams, according to a statement from the investment firm based in Newport Beach, Calif.

Tuttle, an executive vice president in London, will manage day-to-day operations and performance oversight of Pimco’s regional equity desks and staff.

Pimco, which started pushing into equities in 2009, has been slow to gather assets in its stocks strategies, with its four main equity mutual funds accounting for less than 1 percent of its $1.97 trillion in assets.

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Michael Diekmann, chief executive of Pimco parent Allianz, said last year that the bond manager’s expansion into stocks was proving more difficult than expected. Led by co-founder and chief investment officer Gross, Pimco more than five years ago started diversifying beyond fixed income in anticipation of rising interest rates.

The firm last year hired Virginie Maisonneuve from Schroders to lead Pimco’s equity push.

Of the latest hires, McNaught will focus on growth strategies in technology, media and telecoms. Peters will focus on growth strategies in financials. Heymann and Ben-Shlomo will be research analysts with Pimco’s dividend strategy.