EDINBURGH - Scottish Widows' Fund & Life Assurance Society will outsource the administration of its 22 billion investment portfolio to The WM Co. Both firms are based in Edinburgh.
Bill Bain, Scottish Widows group finance director, said outsourcing will reduce costs and "enable us to improve the quality of service to our investment management teams and external clients." Scottish Widows expects some of its staff will be joining WM, while others will be retained in a structured investment support function.
UBS Asset names marketing director
LONDON - Paul Yates has been appointed marketing director for UBS Asset Management, combining oversight of both U.K. and international marketing functions.
Observers speculate the appointment of Mr. Yates, formerly head of the firm's U.K. equities team, to the senior marketing post tips him as the heir apparent to Paul Meredith. Mr. Meredith is chief executive of UBS Asset Management, the holding company for PDFM Ltd., the U.K.'s second-largest money manager, and UBS International Investment London Ltd., an SEC-registered unit. Mr. Meredith also is chairman of PDFM and UBS International, which together run more than 50 billion ($76 billion) in assets.
John Marsh, head of U.K. marketing, will retire by year end, while Jeffrey Hayes, managing director of UBS International, has become deputy marketing director. Mr. Hayes also been put in charge of UBS' pooled funds area, in a new position.
Mr. Yates said his new job will involve setting strategy and creating structures for the firm, particularly overseas. He said there will be greater coordination with parent Union Bank of Switzerland in Zurich, and the firm will seek to gain better penetration of the U.S. pension market.
Framlington International keeps busy
LONDON - Framlington International Ltd. has been very busy.
The London-based money manager has been working on a host of Eastern European and African funds.
The firm is seeking to raise some $30 million for its Volga Fund, investing in the resource-rich and industrialized area of Russia.
The firm's $67 million Russian fund, which invests largely in private equity, was launched in 1993.
Meanwhile, Framlington also is developing a $30 million Slovakian fund, in conjunction with the European Union and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
The manager, a unit of Credit Commercial de France, also just won a mandate to run the $10 million Prometheus Fund, which invests in Central and Eastern Europe.
The fund previously was managed by Cresvale Partners, a now-shuttered unit of troubled Banque Pallas Stern.
Framlington executives hope to reopen the closed-end fund for additional fund-raising during the next few months, said Stephen Watson, European fund manager. The firm hopes to raise at least $10 million in a second tranche.
Elsewhere, Framlington is seeking to raise $40 million for its West African fund, and is contemplating launching an Egyptian fund of perhaps $20 million to $40 million in size, said Jean-Luc Schilling, managing director.
Strategist sees good news in Latin America
Emerging markets are on a rebound, and Latin American markets in particular will see performance twice as good as in 1995, according to the latest research by Salomon Brothers.
In his latest report, John Purcell, Salomon's Latin America equity strategist, said the liquidity risks seen in Mexico, Argentina and Venezuela in 1995 are not likely to repeat this year.
Also, the expected 3.5% growth in the region will be half of the 7% growth projected for Asia, yet it is double last year's average of 1.5%.
Among Latin markets, Peru, Argentina and Brazil are set to outperform, although Peru and Brazil show risk factors. Mr. Purcell is neutral on Chile and Mexico, but added Mexico could be weighed down by low growth and lack of capital flows, while Chile could outperform thanks to low risk and an aggressive anti-inflation stance.
Mr. Purcell said stock selection will be very important.
"The day is past when a 'shotgun' approach to any of these markets, based solely on a 'country call' was appropriate," he wrote.
Vauxhall hires for equities, trims property firms
LUTON, England - The 920 million ($1.4 billion) Vauxhall & Associated Cos. pension funds have hired Morgan Grenfell Asset Management Ltd. to run a 63 million ($96 million) U.K. equities portfolio, said Des MacIntyre, manager of pension investment analysis.
Morgan Grenfell takes over the portfolio from Fleming Investment Management Ltd., which was terminated for performance reasons.
A spokesman for Fleming declined to comment.
No consultant was used in the search.
In addition, the Vauxhall funds are reducing the number of property managers on their roster to two from four.
Vauxhall officials are simplifying their real estate program; they will give greater discretion to the remaining managers and expect to become more active in the real estate market.
Langbourne Property Investment Services Ltd. and Baring Houston & Saunders will be retained.
Fletcher King Services Ltd. has been terminated, while Savills PLC's agricultural land portfolio is being sold off.
The fund has some 75 million to 80 million invested in real estate, representing a 15% allocation in its plans with active populations.
Vauxhall, which is General Motors Corp.'s U.K. subsidiary, may increase the allocation marginally over time.
Hong Kong funds see strong growth
HONG KONG - Net investment in open-end mutual funds managed by the members of the Hong Kong Investment Funds Association reached U.S. $152.87 million for the first three quarters of 1995, compared with a negative $21.12 million of net investments during all of 1994, the association's data show.
In all of 1993, the Hong Kong mutual funds industry recorded $1 billion of net investment.
At the end of October 1995, the total value of the 591 open-end funds managed by association members was $31.868 billion. That figure is almost double the $16.4 billion in members' mutual funds in 1989, according to the association.
George joins Jacobs as marketing director
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - Deborah G. George has joined Jacobs Asset Management as director of marketing for the start-up international equity firm.
She previously had been a marketer at HSBC Asset Management and had been a consultant since leaving HSBC last year.