Emirates manager markets into Europe

Emirates NBD Asset Management has signed an agreement with Acordias, a service platform for financial intermediaries, to facilitate distribution of its managed funds to European domestic, expatriate financial advisers and international life companies

Acordias will market Emirates NBD managed funds investing across a range of mandates and asset classes, including the Middle East and North Africa.

“Europe is one of the most developed and competitive fund markets,” said Deon Vernooy, Chief Executive Officer, Emirates NBD Asset Management. “Over the past year, Emirates NBD Asset Management has been exploring various options to enter the European market and has identified suitable channels to reach asset allocators and financial advisers. We believe this tie up will enable international investors to access our managed funds through Acordias’ best of breed financial products and tax-efficient wrap solutions.”

International investors are attracted to Arab­ markets because of the continuing growth in the region, backed by high oil and gas prices, economic wealth and current attractive valuations across equity and bond markets, he said.

The deal is the latest step in the fund manager’s strategy to increase third-party distribution partnerships, and follows its foray into Singapore in 2010. The group has signed agreements with numerous global distribution partners in the past 18 months to service a growing international client base.

Emirates NBD Asset Management is a wholly-owned subsidiary and the asset management division of Emirates NBD, a leading bank in the region. Regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority and based in the Dubai International Financial Centre, the asset manager has over $1.6bn across a range of funds and asset classes.

These include MENA equity and fixed income funds and a suite of global risk profiled funds and a range of Shari’a compliant vehicles. The Emirates NBD managed funds are domiciled in Jersey and are regulated by the Jersey Financial Services Commission.

Andrew Wilkins, Chief Executive Officer, Acordias, noted: “Emerging markets have been popular with investors in the past few years, and our brokers are currently seeking more undiscovered growth opportunities. Underperformance within the MENA region in 2009 and 2010 to wider emerging markets has left it undervalued and attractive.

The Emirates funds were overweight oil rich nations and underweight equities prior to the recent unrest and have therefore faired well against peers and benchmarks. They offer an interesting opportunity to access a region which because of recent anxiety has potential for healthy returns over the medium to long term. As such we think that they are a great addition to our platform.”

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