A Melbourne equities boutique and a Swiss private bank have entered a two-way distribution partnership, as each looks to tap into the other's markets.
Union Bancaire Privee will market Bell Asset Management's global small and mid cap strategies to its clients in Europe, Asia and Middle East, in line with a traditional sub-advisory, fee share agreement.
In turn, Bell will help UBP with market intelligence on Aussie institutionals, as the Swiss bank sends down a distribution lead from its Geneva office to Australia to establish relationships for its existing funds. Bell will not receive any fees for this.
The relationship started when UBP cast its net for a global small/mid cap manager to add to its lineup.
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"We are very pleased to be entering into this mutually beneficial strategic partnership with UBP. We have no doubt this will enable Bell AM to forge long-term relationships with the very important and growing client base across Asia, Europe and the Middle East. We look forward to working with a like-minded progressive partner like UBP to grow in the years to come," Bell Asset Management chief investment officer Ned Bell said.
Bell Asset Management's funds have been among top performers in its category.
About 90% of its funds under management at September end, when it partnered with Channel for retail and wholesale, was from institutional investors, about 40% of whom were overseas clients that it attracted through eVestment. Its institutional team is led by former NAB Asset Management global head of distribution Rob Sullivan.
With the UBP deal, Bell's strategies will be offered to the Swiss bank's private and institutional clients.
UBP is currently growing its presence in Asia Pacific, with offices in place Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taipei and Tokyo.
It recently opened an Australian onshore branch, via the Hong Kong subsidiary, to support the new partnership and appointed Olivier Marion as the Australia head of business development.
"This is an opportune moment to enter such a prestigious pension market and to offer a wide range of solid solutions to institutional investors in Australia. UBP and Bell AM share many commonalities, not only from a purely investment standpoint but also culturally, as both come from family-owned businesses," UBP co-chief executive for asset management and head of institutional clients Nicolas Faller said.
UBP is looking to distribute in Australia its absolute-return fixed-income, high-yield and emerging market debt products, alternative solutions (alternative risk premia, hedge funds, hedging overlays, convertible bonds, catastrophe bonds and private markets) and its ESG and impact franchise across traditional assets.