General Electric Co.'s finance arm, GE Capital, hired a new chief risk officer from Wells Fargo & Co., the company said Thursday.

Ryan Zanin succeeds Jim Colica, who is retiring after 27 years at GE.

Zanin most recently was the chief risk officer for corporate credit and risk management in international and capital markets at Wells Fargo. He also handled risk management at Wachovia Corp., which Wells bought in late 2008 in the midst of the financial crisis.

Financial firms' risk management came under intense scrutiny in the wake of the financial crisis.

GE Capital caused headaches for its parent during the financial crisis. Worries about GE's exposure to the financial sector because of the unit — which often represented half the company's profits — cost it its AAA credit rating, forced the company to cut its dividend and propelled a decline in its stock. GE, which has admitted it allowed the division to grow too big, has been paring it down, with particular attention to lowering its real-estate portfolio.

GE Capital Chief Executive Mike Neal called Zanin a "proven risk manager with a global perspective and broad functional experience."

GE shares ended down about 2% at $14.12.

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