Santander adds global and Latam-oriented funds to Brazilian onshore platform

Santander Asset Management is expanding its offering of Brazilian-domiciled cross-border funds, beginning with the launch of a fixed-income product that is targeting private-banking clients first, and later institutional investors.

According to Rudolf Gschliffner, product manager at Santander Asset Management in Brazil, lower interest rates and a search for alternatives that lead to greater diversification and higher returns has made international investments relevant among Brazilians clients.

“We have two main offerings. One is the new fund Latin America Corporate Bond Fund, a fixed-income product that will invest in Latin America, which is our most recent strategy, and Global Equity Strategy, a fund of funds that invests in other managers’ products,” he told Fund Pro Latin America.

The Latin America Corporate Bond fund plugs into a strategy with 10 years of track record, managed by Alfredo Mordezki, global head of Latam fixed income in London. In Brazil, the feeder fund that invests in this vehicle already has BRL 400 million (USD 115 million) from private banking and retail clients. The fund utilizes a foreign exchange hedge and Santander Asset Management expects to open it to institutional investors during the second semester of the year.

The global equities product, which uses a funds of funds strategy, has BRL 181 million in AUM and is also open to private banking and retail clients. “We select the best asset management companies around the world to make investments through the local fund of funds,” Gschliffner explained. Managers include Schroders, JP Morgan, BlackRock, Robeco, Fidelity, Columbia Threadneedle, Pioneer, Janus Henderson and Goldman Sachs.

The new funds that are being launched also have a version available to clients on Santander’s retail banking platform, called Select, on which each product has a lower minimum investment requirement. “This segment is personalized to high-income retail customers. The difference is in the advice component and portfolio of each client,” Gschliffner said.

The distribution of the funds is made exclusively through the Santander platform, but according to Gschliffner, the bank has on its platform products from other managers. “We have the distribution of local and international partners, for example, JP Morgan funds. We distribute the key industry managers that we understand are efficient managers.”

At the end of last year, Santander Asset Management in Brazil made a partnership with JP Morgan Asset Management  to assume the management of its local strategies. The process of manager transfer is still ongoing and Gschliffner explained that most of the funds are for institutional clients or have exclusive investors and all of them must be approved by these clients. “We are in process of approval, which has been well-received by now, and in July we should have a better picture of the funds grid that will be transferred to Santander.”

Santander also distributes a global income fund of JP Morgan through the its distribution platform and is studying to have more funds, evaluating specially Global Macro Opportunities fund.