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Friday, December 02, 2011

The Vice Fund Adds Share Classes

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

The Vice Fund is about to gain access to the the advisor channel. Jerry Szilagyi, president of Vice advisor USA Mutuals [profile], confirmed that the historically direct-sold, no-load mutual fund firm will add two advisor-sold, load share classes to the fund. Watch for Szilagyi to expand his distribution team, too.

"We are launching A and C classes of shares at the end of this month and hiring our first wholesaler," Szilagyi told MFWire.com, adding that he intends to "refocus more towards the financial advisor community." "There's been a lot more demand for the Vice Fund. It's a fairly unique product and the performance has been very good."

Fundsters may not be surprised by the move. Szilagyi is also president and CEO of Catalyst Capital Advisors [profile], an advisor-sold fund firm featuring load shares. And after Szilagyi took over USA Mutuals this spring, he told MFWire.com at the time that he and his team "may add load classes of shares at some point" [see MFWire.com, 6/27/2011].

On the hiring side, Szilagyi confirmed that USA Mutuals' first dedicated wholesaler will soon be joining up, covering the greater New York City area and working for third-party marketing firm Flow Consulting Services. Szilagyi declined to identify the incoming hire.

"We're not set up right now to handle wholesaling functions, and they are," Szilagyi said. "I've been using them also at Catalyst Funds for direct marketing for about two years."

And Szilagyi plans to expand USA Mutuals' distribution capabilities even further.

"Our intent is to add additional wholesalers and cover additional territories," Szilagyi said, noting that the Vice Fund's marketing and distribution could get a boost when the fund gets its 10-year track record in 2012. "We'd like to be able to cover most of the major areas in the U.S. over the next year or so." 

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