Time is Ripe for Launch Says San Fran Firm
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Wednesday, May 14, 2003

Time is Ripe for Launch Says San Fran Firm

In another sign that more senior fund industry executives foresee a thaw in the in economy Forward Funds is kicking of a marketing and sales push for its Hoover Mini-Cap Fund. The San Francisco-based fund complex had held off on pushing the fund when it gained SEC approval at the end of 2002.

The fund is being subadvised by Hoover Investment Management, which is also based in San Francisco. The two firms have already worked together since 1998 when Forward launched its Forward Hoover Small Cap Equity Fund. The latest funds has been a topic of discussion between Forward and Hoover since that time, said Irene Hoover, the portfolio manager for both funds.

The decision to push the fund now is a response to a pickup in the economy, says Alan Reid, president of Forward Funds.

"We have been fielding requests for this product since we introduced the Forward Hoover Small Cap Equity Fund in 1998," explained Reid. "It was inevitable that we would respond to those requests, it was just a matter of finding the right time to do it. That time is now."

"I think the timing to introduce this strategy is ideal," added Hoover. "The war is over, and we are pulling out of a long bear market. It's an exciting time for us."

Forward is a specialist in providing marketing a distribution for funds. It outsources the investment management of its two fund families -- Forward Funds and Sierra Club Funds -- to subadvisors.

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