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1 Dec 2006

Nomura launches Fund of Funds in Ireland

Garry Topp, a director at Nomura International said on Thursday that the company hoped to raise more than $100 million for a new open-ended global fund of funds invested in property securities which offered investors downside protection.

Based in Ireland, Nomura said its Global Property 80% Protected Fund would initially be spread across six funds run by Morgan Stanley, Henderson, and Credit Suisse, with each focusing on European, U.S. or Asian securities such as property company shares an real estate investment trusts (REITs). The fund's relative regional weightings will be reviewed every quarter. Nomura said it will charge a 1.5% annual management fee for the fund. The fund has invested 100% in property from the start, but wants to to ensure a continuous level of protection for 80% of the fund's highest value.

Topp said property securities offered investors a reasonable proxy for direct property and provided a more flexible form of global real estate investment. "The benefits of liquidity is that it allows people to move around the different parts of the property cycle around the world, allowing them to move between residential developers in the U.S., say, and offices in Australia," he said.

Topp said the fund was primarily aimed at the high-net-worth and the sophisticated end of the retail investment market. But he said it would also interest institutional investors looking to take some profits on their existing property investments and to put the proceeds to work in a liquid and diversified global property portfolio that offered them protection over any future gains.

The European branch of Nomura is headquartered in London, with offices in major financial centers across Europe. Nomura works closely with Asian and American networks, as well as with Tokyo. Their four business lines (Global Markets, Investment Banking, Merchant Banking and Asset Management) are co-ordinated globally, however each European operating entity is incorporated and regulated separately and reports to local management as well as to Tokyo-based business heads.

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