The ink officially dried on Denver-based ALPS Advisors' deal to adopt the Clough China Fund last Friday – adding the first international open-end mutual fund to ALPS' product roster. ALPS Advisors, Inc. will serve as investment advisor to the fund while Clough Capital Partners will sub-advise the fund.
Tom Carter ALPS Fund Distributors President
The Clough China Fund, which originally launched in December 2005 as the Old Mutual Clay Finlay China Fund and has roughly $52 million in assets, was reorganized into the Clough China Fund after Boston-based Clough Capital Partners was hired in July 2009 to sub-advise the fund. Clough replaced Clay Finlay as sub-adviser to the fund.
This adoption marks the second for ALPS, which adopted the $75 million Activa Long-Short Fund in September 2009. In an interview with the MFWire in November of 2009, Corey Dillon, vice president and director of institutional advisory services for ALPS Advisors, confirmed that the deal to adopt the Clough China fund was in the works but pending shareholder approval, which arrived over this past weekend.
“When the potential of having a Chinese fund in our fund lineup came up it was an interesting idea to us,” Tom Carter, President of ALPS Distributors. “We thought it would be a good opportunity as we have a really great relationship with Clough and Clough Capital, who we've partnered with on a lot of closed-end funds, and the China Fund had a solid performance record,” Carter added.
According to the SEC filing, The Clough China Fund includes A, C, and I Share Classes, that carry net expense ratios of 185, 263, and 140, respectively. The fund invests at least 80 percent of its net assets, plus any borrowings for investment purposes, in equity securities of companies either organized in China, Hong Kong, or Taiwan, are predominantly traded on these countries' exchange- that meet one of three requirements: are organized in China, Hong Kong, or Taiwan; are primarily traded on the China, Hong Kong, or Taiwan exchange; or are not based in China, Taiwan, or Hong Kong, but derive at least 50 percent of their revenues from business activities in these regions.
Despite a changing of the guard, the fund will remain in the same management hands as Francoise Vappereau, Clough China Fund's Hong Kong-based co-portfolio manager, formerly worked at Clay Finlay and has overseen the fund since its launch. In July 2009, Eric Brock, a founding partner of Clough, joined Vappereau in managing the fund.
ALPS Distributors, Inc., which is an affiliate of ALPS and the adviser, is the distributor for the Fund, while ALPS Fund Services will handle the fund's administration services.
As to what lies ahead for ALPS in 2010? It seems future adoptions are likely in store for the firm.
“We've got a lot of initiatives in the works and there's certainly more fund adoptions in [ALPS'] future. You'll probably see more open-end fund launches and ETF launches on our horizon,” said Carter.
“Future adoptions are definitely something we're pursuing but it has to meet several criteria. First of all, it has to be an asset category that makes sense for our portfolio. Then it has to give us a relationship with a strong sub-advisor and be the right mix of good investments and a marketable story,” Corey Dillon, vice president and director of institutional advisory services for ALPS Advisors, added in an interview with the MFWire. “We are currently evaluating two potential adoptions.”
Company Press Release
ALPS Advisors Teams With Clough Capital Partners on Open-End Fund
Fast-Growing Investment Lineup Goes International With Adoption of
DENVER, CO--(Marketwire - January 20, 2010) - ALPS Advisors, Inc. (ALPS), a leading provider of advisory solutions to the investment management industry, today announced the adoption of the Clough China Fund to its investment lineup. Shareholders have approved the replacement of Old Mutual Capital, the fund's previous adviser, with ALPS Advisors, Inc.
The $52 million Fund, launched in December 2005 as the Old Mutual Clay Finlay China Fund, was recently reorganized into the Clough China Fund, a newly created offering of the ALPS-sponsored Financial Investors Trust. Clough Capital Partners (Clough) had been hired in July 2009 to replace Clay Finlay as sub-adviser to the Fund.
The ALPS adoption of the Clough China Fund will provide investors continued access to Clough's global investment approach as well as continuity of the Fund's portfolio management. Francoise Vappereau, Clough China Fund's Hong Kong-based Co-Portfolio Manager, was formerly with Clay Finlay, and has been managing the Fund since inception. Eric A. Brock, one of Clough's founding partners, joined Ms. Vappereau as Co-Portfolio Manager of the Fund in July 2009.
"The addition of the Clough China Fund is an extraordinary win for the ALPS lineup," said Corey Dillon, Senior Vice President and Director of Institutional Advisory Services for ALPS Advisors, Inc. "Not only do we fill this important investment segment with a solid portfolio, we gain access to Clough Capital Partners, one of the most recognized global managers on the Street."
Boston-based Clough was founded in 2000 by Charles Clough, who served as Chief Global Investment Strategist at Merrill Lynch & Co. for more than 13 years, with partners James Canty and Mr. Brock. Today, the firm features 13 investment professionals on staff, and maintains an on-the-ground China presence with an office in Hong Kong to complement its U.S. headquarters.
"We believe China offers some of the best long-term investment opportunities of any region across the globe," says Mr. Clough, "and the Clough China Fund has performed well under Francoise's leadership. We're well aware of ALPS' capabilities, and we're excited at the prospect of making the Fund increasingly accessible to more investors."
Ms. Vappereau, now a Managing Director for Clough, and Mr. Brock will have access to the full suite of Clough's global investment capabilities, including a team of analysts with extensive experience and knowledge of the Chinese market. Mr. Clough will serve as a strategic advisor on the portfolio. In aggregate, the portfolio managers and the Global Investment Committee for the China Fund represent more than a century of investment experience.
The fund adoption process is highly attractive for a progressive firm like ALPS as it can adopt specific funds to plug specific spaces without having to buy an entire complex. At the same time, adoptions allow solid performing open-end funds like Clough China Fund to find new life with an acquiring asset manager. ALPS, which adopted the Wellington Management Sub-advised Activa Fund to its lineup in September, anticipates a number of fund adoptions for its Financial Investors Trust.
The Clough China Fund is being offered in three share classes covering institutional and retail audiences and will be available on most mutual fund platforms and through financial intermediaries.
An investor should consider investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses carefully before investing. The Prospectus contains this and other information. For more complete information about the Clough China Fund or to obtain a Prospectus, call 866-759-5679 for Clough China Fund or 1-800-346-2670 for the Activa Value Fund. Please read the prospectus carefully before investing or sending money.
An investment in the Fund involves risk, including loss of principle.
Investing in China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan involves risk and considerations not present when investing in more established securities markets. The Clough China Fund may be more susceptible to the economic, market, political, and local risks of these regions than a fund that is more geographically diversified.
l Partners, Wellington Management Company, LLP, Old Mutual, Clay Finlay, and ALPS Distributors, Inc. are not affiliated.
Corey Dillon and Tom Carter are Registered Representative of ALPS Distributors, Inc.
The Clough China and Activa Value Funds are distributed by ALPS Distributors, Inc.
About ALPS Advisors, Inc.
ALPS Advisors, Inc. ™ is a Denver-based outsourcing solution for administration, compliance, fund accounting, legal, marketing, tax administration, transfer agency and shareholder services for open-end, closed-end, hedge, and exchange-traded funds. ALPS has approximately $18 billion in client mutual fund assets under administration and ALPS Distributors, Inc. provides distribution services to over $220 billion in client assets, as of December 31, 2009. For more information, visit www.alpsinc.com .
ALPS is a registered trademark or trademark of ALPS Fund Services, Inc.™ in the United States and other countries. All other brand names, product names, or trademarks belong to their respective holders.
Clough Capital Partners L.P.
Clough is a Boston-based investment advisory firm which manages approximately $3.0 billion in assets as of January 1, 2010: $50 million in open-end mutual funds (Clough China Fund); $825 million in hedge fund and institutional accounts; and $2.2 billion in three closed-end funds -- Clough Global Allocation (GLV), Clough Global Equity (GLQ), and the Clough Global Opportunities Fund (GLO). The firm uses a global and theme-based approach and invests in securities on a global basis. Clough was founded in 2000 by Chuck Clough and partners James Canty and Eric Brock.