has entered the mutual fund business. The Little Silver, New Jersey-based company launched the WBI Absolute Return Balanced Fund
and WBI Absolute Return Dividend Growth Fund
on December 29. [SEC filing
| Don Schreiber|
In an interview with The MFWire.com
, WBI CEO and founder Don Schreiber Jr.
said he hopes that the two funds will each end this year with AUM of $50 million to $100 million.
Heading up sales for WBI is national sales manager Mike Buchholz
. WBI has currently has six external wholesalers pitching its mutual funds and SMAs. It has three internals.
"We're targeting to have two more external wholesalers by the end of the first quarter and add two more by the end of the year," Schreiber said.
Additions are also planned on the internal wholesaler side. The goal is to eventually have an external/internal wholesaler ratio of 1:1, he said.
WBI is focusing its sales efforts mainly on independent broker-dealers and wirehouses.
Cambridge Investment Research
is the first independent b-d to carry WBI's mutual funds.
The funds are also available through Pershing's FundVest and WBI officials are working to get the funds on the Schwab, Fidelity and TD Ameritrade platforms in the coming months.
Schreiber, who founded WBI in 1984 and co-authored
the book All About Dividend Investing
, is the funds' co-portfolio manager. The lead manager is Gary E. Stroik
, a vice president at WBI Investments
and Schreiber's co-author.
The strategy for the funds is derived from WBI's absolute return separate account portfolios.
Schreiber said it took about four months from the
time WBI began preparations to get into the mutual fund space to the products' launch date.
WBI tapped U.S. Bancorp Fund Services
transfer agent, fund accountant and fund administrator; Quasar Distributors as distributor; US Bank as custodian;
Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker LLP as legal counsel
and Tait, Weller & Baker LLP as the independent registered public accounting firm.
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