Wells Fargo AM set for multiple fund launch in Europe

Wells Fargo Asset Management, part of the San Francisco, US-based bank, is to launch six new investment sub-funds under the Wells Fargo (Lux) Worldwide Fund as part of the firm’s growth strategy to develop its international offerings.

Wells Fargo AM rates itself the 11th-largest US mutual fund manager and the 28th-largest internationally, with more than $445bn in global assets under management and more than 35 portfolio management teams worldwide.

In June, Karla Rabusch, head of Wells Fargo Funds Management LLC, indicated that the firm had Europe firmly in its sights for expansion. “The US is no longer growing as quickly as other areas of the world,” she said. “We have been looking for some time to leverage our strengths in Europe and Asia, and Europe does after all account for 35% of mutual fund assets in the world.”

Rabusch is also a vice president of Wells Fargo & Company, and president of Wells Fargo Advantage Funds.

Andrew Owen, executive vice president, Wells Fargo Asset Management, said further expansion into the European marketplace, with a market size of some $2.9trn and a faster growth rate than North America, “is the logical next step for our growing international fund lineup.”

“In the past 18 months, we have witnessed meaningful growth in both assets and clients investing in our existing fund range. The addition of these six funds will allow UK and European clients access to more of our established portfolio management teams and provide them with fund options that have the potential to serve as valuable complements to their existing investments.”

The firm put down roots in Luxembourg in 2008, building a fund range and track record to underpin further expansion from $150m in assets under management to some $1bn in “long term” flows, or $2bn including money market funds.

The six new funds are the Emerging Markets Equity II Fund (managers Jerry Zhang, Derrick Irwin), Emerging Markets Income and Growth Fund (Anthony Cragg, Alison Shimada), the Global Opportunity Bond Fund (Tony Norris, Peter Wilson, Alex Perrin, Michael Lee, Christopher Wightman), the Precious Metals Fund (Michael Bradshaw, Oleg Makhorine), the US Premier Growth Fund (Thomas Ognar, Bruce Olson, Joseph Eberhardy) and the US Short-Term High Yield Bond Fund (Thomas Price, Kevin Maas, Michael Schueller).

They join the other funds in the Worldwide Fund range: the China Equity Fund, the Emerging Markets Equity Fund, the Global Equity Fund, the US All Cap Growth Fund, the US Dollar Short-Term Money Market Fund, the US High Yield Bond Fund and the US Large Cap Growth Fund.

Owen said Wells Fargo AM’s approach has resonated well among European investors. “They like the complete autonomy of our fund managers, the multiple layers of risk management and oversight, and a strong focus on product transparency.”

The Wells Fargo (Lux) Worldwide Fund brings together autonomous investment teams, independent risk management and collaborative partnerships. The managers operate independently, using proprietary research and analysis to implement their time-tested strategies and processes. Al are subject to overarching risk management to ensure their processes remain consistent and comply with governance policies and procedures.

This rigorous oversight creates a culture that holds portfolio managers accountable for delivering results consistent with clients’ expectations, the firm said.

Target markets are Germany, France and Italy, with offices to be established in all three by the end of the year. Wells Fargo funds are already on 13 platforms in Europe, with another 20 platforms to come, covering most of the 38 believed to be operating in the region.


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