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Rating:Employees Lead a Buyout of Johnson Asset Management Not Rated 3.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Monday, December 03, 2007

Employees Lead a Buyout of Johnson Asset Management

Reported by Erin Kello

The employees of Racine, Wisconsin-based Johnson Asset Management have led a buyout of the company. After the deal closed on Novenber 30, the company was renamed Optique Capital Management.

"This was a great opportunity to own and control our own business," Wendell Perkins, chief investment officer at Optique, told The MFWire. "Clients prefer to see that management has a stake in the business as well."

Optique is now 70 percent owned by the employee group, with the remainder of the company's shares held by the Sheldon Lumbar family of Wisconsin.

As for future plans for Optique, Perkins said the exploration of new product lines and possibly hiring some new marketing people are both being looked into.

Johnson Asset Management started out in 1989 as a family wealth manger for the SC Johnson family. The company launched its first mutual funds in 1998 and currently has $1.7 billion in AUM.

Currently, Optique operates four mutual funds, which were branded the JohnsonFamily Funds. The funds have now been re-branded the Optique Funds.

In early 2008 the company plans to relocate its offices to Milwaukee, WI. Perkins says the move is all about geography; "We want to be more accessible to our investors."


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