Strong Capital Management filed suit seeking about $125 million over the alleged use of its name in mass e-mailings selling cyberstripping, computer equipment and sports betting. Strong sued a number of people over e-mail advertisements it alleges used Strong's name in the return address, and was routed through Strong's Web server.
The ads, which included an ad for so called cyberstripping, were an infraction on the trademark of Strong's name and broke telecommunications laws, said Jody R. Lowe, a spokeswoman for Strong. The e-mail senders got into Strong's Web server, not its business computer systems, Ms. Lowe said.
An attorney for one of the defendants, Rick Lee, president of Over The Air Equipment Inc., declined to comment. The attorney for two others, David Smith and Glenn Canady, both of whom have worked as bulk e-mailers, denied Strong's charges.
The Pacific Horizon Funds board of trustees terminated BISYS Group as administrator and distributor of the funds. The board hired Bank of America, which also is the investment manager, to be administrator. Bank of America, in turn, hired PFPC, a subsidiary of PNC, as subadministrator. Provident Distributors, another PNC subsidiary, will provide distribution. After the termination, BISYS resigned as the transfer agent of the funds. The board is still seeking a replacement.
W. Bruce McConnell, a partner at Drinker Biddle & Reath, the board's legal counsel, declined comment on why the board made the change. Lynn J. Mangum, BISYS chairman and CEO, said the company was ``shocked and deeply disappointed'' by the action.
World Color Press, Greenwich, Conn., is reviewing RFPs for a single provider for a 401(k) plan that is being formed from the merging of 14 plans of recently acquired companies. A decision is expected by the end of September. The plan is expected to have in excess of $100 million, said Pat Russo, head of the plan.
The company also hired SEI Investments as manager of managers for its $150 million cash balance plan formed by combining six plans. The company terminated all managers of the old plans. Nelson's Directory of Plan Sponsors lists Capital Guardian Trust, J.P. Morgan Investment Management and Donald Smith as World Color Press' managers.
Wilshire Associates is asking large pension plans to participate in establishing a benchmark to measure the risk of LBOs. Although billions of dollars are being invested in LBOs, pension funds have no adequate measure of their riskiness, Wilshire officials said. Over the next two quarters, Wilshire officials expect to get the participation of plans holding about 20% of all LBO investments. Wilshire needs the cooperation of the large plans to get the necessary data to build a customized index.
SEARCHES & HIRINGS
St. Paul (Minn.) Teachers' Retirement System launched a search for a manager to handle small-cap non-U.S. equities of developed countries in a commingled portfolio. RFPs are due back Aug. 1, said Eugene Waschbusch, secretary and treasurer of the $650 million fund.The fund expects to make about a $10 million allocation to this sector. A decision is expected by Oct. 1 at the earliest.
Staffordshire County Council, Stafford, England, hired Jupiter Asset Management to run a roughly £200 million U.K. equity brief, replacing Newton Investment, said Des Smallman, deputy county treasurer. Newton was replaced because of a combination of performance concerns and personnel changes, he said. Newton officials declined to comment.
The nearly £1.2 billion ($2 billion) pension fund also reappointed PDFM and Morgan Grenfell Asset Management to run about £200 million each in U.K. equities. INVESCO Asset Management was reappointed for a combined £108 million in Japanese and Pacific Basin (ex-Japan) equity mandates.
Custody for the five equity portfolios, totaling £708 million, was consolidated with Northern Trust.
Amarillo (Texas) Firemen's Relief & Retirement Fund hired Bank One as custodian to replace Boatmen's Trust.
The in-house search focused on fees after most custodians to seemed to be equal during the RFP process, said Dean Frigo, finance director for the city. The pension fund has $60 million in assets.
Graham Dickason has been named general manager-international asset management, a new position, for MPF Management Services, Johannesburg, South Africa. The firm manages the 29 billion rand ($6.2 billion) Mining Industry Pension Funds. Mr. Dickason formerly was general manager with responsibilities for domestic (South African) equities. Mike Cullabine, a member of MPF's finance department, succeeds Mr. Dickason in his former role.
Mr. Dickason said he will focus on growing MPF's international stock portfolio to 15% of total assets from the current 5%