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Rating:BMO's Mantra for The US Is Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Monday, October 1, 2012

BMO's Mantra for The US Is "Grow, Grow, Grow."

Reported by Tommy Fernandez

BMO Global Asset Management, which currently has $10 billion AUM in the U.S. mutual fund space, plans to grow exponentially in the U.S. over the next few years, co-chief executive officer Barry McInerney told MFWire staffers during an interview today.

"We have very aggressive plans for the U.S.," McInerney said, adding that his company has plans of reaching "multiples" of the $10 billion of assets under management in the U.S. in a couple of years.

Moreover, his company, which currently markets 23 funds in the U.S., intends to reach around 30 within 12-months. The fund business had $8.4 billion AUM at the time BMO purchased Marshall Funds as part of a larger banking deal.

BMO launched its 23rd fund today, the BMO Low Volatility Equity Fund.

BMO will grow both organically in the U.S. and via acquisitions, according to McInerney, a Canadian-native who previously served as chief executive and president of Harris Investment Management Inc. and, before that, as managing director of Institutional Investment Strategy and Services at Frank Russell Company.

BMO made its first entry into the U.S. when it purchased the Chicago-based Harris Bancorp in 1984, which allowed the Canadian financial conglomerate to slowly, but steadily, establish itself in the midwest. It then purchased the Milwaukee-based Marshall & Ilsley Corp. in 2011, which provided BMO with a foundation for expanding its mutual fund and retirement operations in the U.S.

MFWire sister publication 401kWire reported last month that BMO was rebranding three businesses related to its retirement services.

McInerney says his company is now on the prowl for new companies, and is actually looking at a few targets--although he declined to name which. The factors governing acquisition decisions, he said, are capability, geography, and size.

"If there are any opportunities for size, we will definitely look at them," he said. 

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