Beeson Gregory is to apply to the FSA for UK recognition for its Luxembourg-based Sicav, which it wa...
Beeson Gregory is to apply to the FSA for UK recognition for its Luxembourg-based Sicav, which it wants to use as its fund platform for Europe, writes Robert Stock.
The group, a UK investment bank specialising in smaller companies, is looking to launch its first fund, a pan-European portfolio, later this month. Beeson Gregory hopes to get the go-ahead for the Sicav this month from the Luxembourg authorities and will then immediately apply to the FSA.
The fund, which is being launched following the acquisition of a team of fund managers from Dresdner, will initially be aimed at the institutional market, larger discretionary IFAs and fund of funds managers.
Three share classes have been developed for the Sicav, one of which is directly tailored for investors with only small sums to invest. It has a minimum of E2,500 and offers intermediaries a commission of up to 3%. The other two share classes are institutional, and minimum investment begins at E100,000.
The pan-European small-cap fund will be managed by Andrew Impey, Caroline Watson and Tony Parker.
Parker ran the Dresdner RCM European Special Trust, which invested a large part of its assets in European smaller companies, as well as the Dresdner RCM European Growth, Continental Europe and European Privatisation funds. Watson ran UK smaller company portfolios for Dresdner.
Together their experience runs to 40 years, but if Beeson Gregory wishes to launch other regional smaller companies funds, such as covering the US market, Graham Bowden, head of sales at Beeson Gregory Investment Management, said it would be necessary to add to its fund management team.
Beeson Gregory is also focused on keeping the assets in the fund, and any subsequent launches, to a manageable size. Tony Parker said that it did not intend, under current market conditions, to have assets of more than £1bn in total, both institutional and retail, in pan-European small caps. The portfolio will invest in between 70 and 80 stocks.
Hand in hand with the upcoming launch is the development of a web-based service for IFAs and investors and the development of an intermediary sales channel, although the early priority remains the top-end distribution channels.
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