Oak Value Capital Management
has inked a distribution agreement with Merrill Lynch
for its Oak Value Fund
. The fund was added in late December to three Merrill platforms, Merrill Lynch Personal Advisor
, Mutual Fund Advisor Selects
and Personal Investment Advisory
"We didn't pursue them, they found us," said Oak Value Capital CEO and fund co-manager Larry Coats
in an interview with The MFWire
Merrill Lynch, now part of Bank of America
, first reached out to Oak Value back in September 2000, according to Coats. The fund wasn't added to the Merrill platform at that time. Then in November 2007, Merrill Lynch approached Oak Value again and discussions culminated in the fund's addition to the three platforms last month, shortly before Bank of America finished its acquisition of Merrill Lynch.
Asked whether the change of ownership at its new distribution partner has any impact on his company's ties to Merrill, Coats said: "I've seen nothing at this point that would suggest that it would have any impact on our relationship with Merrill Lynch."
The no-load fund is also available through Schwab's One Source
and TD Ameritrade
Coats estimates that at least 30 percent of the fund's assets have historically been driven by third-party distribution relationships.
Separately, North Carolina-based Oak Value recently moved from University Tower in Durham, where it had been based since its founding in 1986, to new offices in Chapel Hill when its previous lease expired. Oak Value, which has 13 employees, made the move in November.
Armie Margaret Lee
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