Manulife & Citigroup See Big Demand for MDAs
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Tuesday, October 15, 2002

Manulife & Citigroup See Big Demand for MDAs

Manulife Financial and Citigroup Asset Management (CAM) are targeting investment advisors and broker-dealers with their recently-launched multi-style managed account program, which brings money managers from different organizations into a single account.

More than 4,000 third-party clients have signed on to the product -- Manulife Private Account, which was launched last month, confirmed a spokesperson at Manulife. She also conceded that the product was promoted even before last month's official launch.

The Manulife Private Account is designed to deliver personalized wealth management strategy in one core account featuring money management from a select group of asset managers. The account also features financial advice from independent financial planners and broker-dealers. Manulife is one of the first insurance companies to enter the managed account market.

CAM has the role of "Overlay Portfolio Manager" for the new product. The investment managers in the program include Franklin Templeton, Deutsche Asset Management, OFI Private Investments, Radnor Capital Management and Salomon Brothers Asset Management.

"Our alliance with Citigroup Asset Management and the superior quality of our investment line-up give us a distinct advantage in the managed accounts market. Our inherent distribution, marketing, and due diligence strength provide a strong foundation which will position us favorably as we enter this market," said John D. DesPrez III, chairman & president of Manulife USA, in a release.

The multi-discipline account (MDA) concept was started by CAM five years ago. The MDA approach has since emerged as one of the most successful products in money management. For instance, the firm reportedly gained more than $7 billion in new assets in these accounts in 2001. MDAs provide high-net-worth investors, working with their financial consultants, a way to implement effective diversification and asset allocation strategies.

Manulife Financial will monitor the various asset managers in the program to ensure the quality of the money management process.

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