ML Capital expands Ucits distribution to Swiss and Germans

ML Capital has sealed a distribution deal for its MontLake alternatives Ucits fund platform with Zurich’s Acolin Fund Services.

Under the terms of the deal, managers on the Ireland-domiciled platform will gain exposure to many banking groups in Germany and Switzerland.

John Lowry, ML Capital chairman, said: “This deal with Acolin will further enhance our competitive position as these distribution deals can often take a year or more to structure.”

Daniel Haefele, chairman of Acolin, said: “We can now get these funds direct market access within three to four weeks”.

Strategies represented on the MontLake Ucits platform include global macro and long/short equity. ML Capital expects assets on it to breach $500m by mid-2012.

ML Capital’s fourth quarter report surveying alternative Ucits fund investors found the largest expected increase in allocations are to global macro systematic, and computer-driven strategies, with each already seeing demand almost double over the third quarter.

However, demand for equity hedge strategies in developed markets and in event-driven Ucits managers declined noticeably this year.

Perhaps not surprisingly given investors shunning advanced markets, interest in emerging markets funds was high, with 39% of respondents saying they would increase their flows to GEM Ucits funds.

Lowry added ML Capital was also in discussions about its Ucits platform with distribution partners and private banks in Latin America and Asia, each “experiencing significant demand for alternative Ucits products”.

Asian investors are widely expected to continue recognising and wanting vehicles adhering to Ucits provisions, even though a recent Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation meeting discussed establishing a similar passport structure for Asia, the Asia Region Funds Passport.

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