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Alternative Market Briefing

Switzerland reinforces asset management industry

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Jean Keller
Benedicte Gravrand, Opalesque Geneva:

The Swiss financial centre is reputed more for its wealth management than its asset management industry. But with the ongoing changes in its funds law (which should be implemented this year) and plans from financial associations to strengthen this part of the business, some say the Swiss asset management industry could gain a lot more prominence in the coming years.

The big issue for Switzerland as a financial centre has been the change in the Swiss banking secrecy laws, which came during the recent financial crisis. This affected the asset base as well as business and innovation. Switzerland has had to deal with more than a few problems in all.

"Paradoxically, this was a very good environment to build an asset management firm," Jean Keller, CEO of Geneva-based Argos Managers, tells Opalesque. "Furthermore, investors are very willing to listen to new stories. Our strategies are mostly niche, so we avoided the general gloom that has plagued the Swiss financial market."

Keller is a member of the Swiss Funds Association (SFA)’s Alternative Investment Council (AIC), which aims to strengthen the interests of alternative investment activities in Switzerland. Their pamphlet mentions that, for example, 20 of 108 multimanager hedge fund......................

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