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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Phoenix Unveils New Name

by: Erin Kello

You can trust us with your money. This is what Phoenix Investment Partners wants to get across to its shareholders with its post spin-off rebranding. Following the completion of its spin-off from The Phoenix Companies, the company will be known as Virtus Investment Partners. In a release, the company said the name "connotes the characteristics of integrity, quality and strength."

The company also unveiled a new logo to complement the brand.

The name Virtus is was created internally, Phoenix spokesman Joe Fazzino told the MFWire. The new logo was created by New York agency Monaco Lange, who also assisted with some branding work, he added.

Phoenix will rebrand its PhoenixFunds family of mutual funds as Virtus Mutual Funds, pending shareholder approval.

The firm aims to have the spin-off process completed by the end of the third quarter, Fazzino said.

Affiliated managers and unaffiliated subadvisers of the company will retain their individual brands.

Company Press Release

HARTFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Phoenix Investment Partners, a diversified asset management firm with $33.4 billion under management, announced today that it will be renamed Virtus Investment Partners, Inc. when it completes its previously announced spin-off from The Phoenix Companies, Inc (NYSE: PNX).

Virtus is Latin and connotes the characteristics of integrity, quality and strength.

“Virtus Investment Partners will be committed to the same principal objectives of investor success and service excellence that distinguish us today as Phoenix Investment Partners,” said George R. Aylward, president of Phoenix Investment Partners, who will become president and chief executive officer of Virtus at the spin-off. “The traits of integrity, quality, and strength are the hallmarks upon which we will build our organization. While our name will change, we will not change the way we manage our clients’ assets and deliver service,” Aylward added.

The company also introduced its new logo, with the name “Virtus” rising above a curved line over the words “Investment Partners.” The curved line represents the ever-changing investment horizon of clients and the words “Investment Partners” form the foundation of the logo, just as they are the foundation of the company’s business model. The logo uses a rich blue for “Virtus,” offset by a modern green for “Investment Partners.”

The company will rebrand its PhoenixFunds family of mutual funds as Virtus Mutual Funds, subject to the approval of the trustees and directors of the mutual fund board, and will introduce a complementary logo for its institutional business. Each of the company’s affiliated managers and unaffiliated subadvisers will retain its individual brand.

“We will hold true to the values that have served us and our investors well over the years,” Aylward said. “In particular, we understand the responsibility we have to our clients and we are committed to their success as investors.”

Virtus Investment Partners provides investment management products and services to individuals and institutions. It operates a multi-manager asset management business, comprising a number of individual affiliated managers, each with a distinct investment style, autonomous investment process and individual brand. Investors have an array of needs and Virtus offers a variety of investment styles and multiple disciplines to meet those needs.

With roots dating to 1851, The Phoenix Companies, Inc. (NYSE:PNX) helps individuals and institutions solve their often highly complex personal financial and business planning needs through its broad array of life insurance, annuities and investments. The company’s products and services reflect deep insights into the wants and needs of consumers and financial professionals gleaned from research, including its Phoenix Wealth Survey, conducted annually since 2000. In 2007, Phoenix had annual revenues of $2.6 billion and total assets of $30.2 billion. For more information, visit www.phoenixwm.com.

Note to editors: An electronic version of the Virtus Investment Partners logo is available from joe.fazzino@phoenixwm.com.

Statements made in this release that look forward in time involve risks and uncertainties and are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, the adverse effect from a decline in the securities markets or a decline in the Company’s products’ performance, a general downturn in the economy, competition from other companies, changes in government policy or regulation, inability of the Company to attract or retain key employees, inability of the Company to implement its operating strategy and acquisition strategy, inability of the Company to manage rapid expansion and unforeseen costs and other effects related to legal proceedings or investigations of governmental and self-regulatory organizations.  

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