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Fund managers beef up services Back  
Against a background of volatility in global equity markets, the past month has seen increased activity in the Irish fund management sector.

The Dublin based European headquarters of Mercer’s multi-manager business, formerly known as Global Investments (MGI), has just received regulatory approval for three new funds, while other players have also expanded their range of services.

Mercer’s new funds, which are aimed at helping European pension funds to diversify, bring the total number of multi-manager funds managed out of Dublin by Mercer to 12. Amit Popat, head of European business development with MGI, says that over the past year the firm has seen its assets under management grow to almost $900 million. Globally, Mercer manages some $16.9 billion in multi-manager funds. Since its launch in the summer of 2006, Mercer’s fund management operation has grown to a team of 14 people – 10 in the Dublin office, and four based in London.

MGI’s rebranding is due to Mercer repositioning itself as a financial services provider with a range of services including actuarial and investment consulting, investment management in the form of implemented consulting, as well as pension and benefits outsourcing.

Meanwhile there has also been further activity amongst other players. Merrion Stockbrokers has just launched its new fund management unit, with Rory Gillen, a co-founder of Merrion and former head of research, just appointed to head it up. As reported in FINANCE August, the new operation will expand the brokerage’s investment funds offering to its own clients, while the firm will also consider selling its proprietary funds via third parties in future.

Merrill Lynch has also expanded its Dublin based wealth management operation through the launch of a discretionary portfolio management service for its high net worth clients.

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