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Merrill Lynch launches global product from Dublin office Back  
Merrill Lynch has launched a new mutual fund that will offer its Irish high net worth clients access to the world’s top-tier asset managers. The fund, Merrill Lynch Global Selects, enables clients to tailor a portfolio of funds designed to meet their specific investment needs and objectives, by providing individual investors with easy access to managers whose portfolios include European, UK, US and emerging markets equities as well as specialised fund income portfolios and short-term securities portfolios, all in one comprehensive offering. The investment managers are selected by Merrill Lynch Bank (Suisse) S.A.

The fund’s 29 investment managers include Dublin-based Pioneer Investments, as well as Gartmore Investment Limited, BNP Paribas Asset Management, and Merrill Lynch Investment Managers. Clients will have the ability to change the manager of the fund on an on-going basis.

The fund is completely open architecture and is one of the first such type of funds to be launched in Europe. It is the first such type to be authorised by IFSRA.

According to Nick Tucker, director of global private client for the UK and Ireland,
Ireland is a key market for ML’s private client division, as according to the Merrill Lynch/Cap Gemini Ernst & Young World Wealth Report 2003, there are over 15,000 high net worth individuals in Ireland. (High net worth is classified as having over a million euros of investable assets).

Merrill Lynch International Bank (Dublin)’s private client business was launched in 2000, and to date it has been a stand-out success compared with other private client groups in Europe says Tucker.

He adds that the product was specifically designed for Irish investors because it is so tax-efficient, adding that ML intends marketing the product in the UK also, but that it will be launched there with a wrapper.

The fund currently is currently worth over $450 million and is set up as a Dublin-based UCITS, comprised of multiple portfolios. Over time, Tucker believes that it will become one of Dublin’s largest SICAVs. Brown Brothers Harriman is acting as custodian to the fund, with BISYS taking on the transfer agency role.

Minimum investment to Merrill Lynch Global Selects is euro/€100,000, but investors can access individual managers for euro/$5,000.

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