Swiss asset manager sets up in Edinburgh to cover IFA market

Swiss firm SYZ Asset Management is opening an Edinburgh office to get closer to the Scotland and North of England IFA market, Xavier Guillon, chief executive of Oyster funds has said.

Oyster, which is SYZ’s Ucits fund group, has been selling its funds through intermediaries in Europe, and intends to broaden its reach within the UK.

Mr Guillon said although the funds were available on the Raymond James platform in the UK, the Edinburgh base would help the local office reach more advisers in Scotland and the North of England, as well as get onto more platforms.

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To this end, the team has hired Derek Borthwick as business development director for Scotland, the North of England and Northern Ireland, as well as Clare Manson, who will be fund manager of the Oyster European mid- and small-cap fund.

Mr Guillon said: “We had planned our office creation in Edinburgh for a while. We already have good experience in continental Europe, and this is part of our strategy to expand in the UK by covering the IFA market.”

He said he was “in the process” of signing contracts with most of the UK platforms, and added that he expected Oyster funds to be available on the main platforms early in 2015.

Adviser view

Andrew Hannay, director of Edinburgh-based Robson Mackintosh, said: “Edinburgh is quite busy with a lot of wealth management firms, but I think it is a good financial base.

“I would be interested to see what SYZ has got to offer, and judging by what the company has done already, in recruiting Ms Manson, I would be keen to see what its approach will be.”