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Rating:A Virginia Shop Kicks Up Its Web Presence Not Rated 5.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Tuesday, May 21, 2013

A Virginia Shop Kicks Up Its Web Presence

Reported by Tommy Fernandez

Yorktown Management & Research is kicking its web presence up a knotch.

The 17-member firm, which includes six scions of the Mason mutual fund dynasty, has hired Suasion Resources, an online marketing consultant which caters to financial service companies, to help improve Yorktown's website.

"It is important for API Funds to use online resources like our website, Facebook and twitter to build up our name recognition and brand. This is cost effective and we feel the most productive way to reach our target audience,"Dave Basten, managing director of Yorktown, which manages API Funds, recently told MFWire. "With more advisors preferring to use these resources to access relevant information for their clients it is imperative for us to engage with a partner like Suasion Resources. This is a significant first step for us in doing a better job of communicating our message."

The online move dovetails with Basten's strategy of aggressively courting advisors in his efforts to generate awareness of Yorktown's six funds, four of which are part of its Efficient Frontier line. Some of these funds invest in business development companies.

Basten said that the funds are gaining ground among the advisor set in part because of the firm's one-year-old L-share class, which is a C-share class without the Contingent Deferred Sales Charge (CDSC).

The funds are roughly at $800 million and the firm expects to pass the $1 billion by Fall at the latest.

Incidentally, Basten is a mutual fund executive who (very politely, he does everything very politely) said "No." to Morgan Stanley when the fund platform came knocking on his door recently.

Too much flow too soon could hurt these burgeoning funds, Basten said.

"We didn't think that growing too fast too soon was in the best interest of our shareholders," Basten said. "We are not in a hurry to become a big, or even a middle-sized, fund firm overnight."

The 17-member Yorktown includes six Basten's, who trace their lineage back four generations to great-grandfather Walter G. Mason, who in 1927 and co-founded Scott, Horner & Mason, which later became Mason & Lee. Raymond "Chip" Mason, nephew of David's grandfather Aubrey L. Mason eventually founded Mason & Company which he grew into Legg Mason and he later acquired Mason & Lee in 1980.  

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