EUROPE - The WM Company, the performance measurement business, is planning to make further inroads into continental Europe, starting with the German and Swiss pension fund market.
The Edinburgh-based firm, which became part of the State Street Group when the latter acquired Deutsche’s European global securities business for US$1.5bn, is planning to cement its base in these two markets through an enhanced performance measurement offering.
Michael Walsh (pictured), managing director of the company, explained: “Europe is a big opportunity for us.
“We had a lot of clients in the UK and the Netherlands, but last year we inherited a lot of State Street’s clients in Germany and Switzerland. The next stage would be offering our service in Nordic countries such as Sweden.
“We are planning to align the product range available for various businesses, that is to have UK products available in Switzerland and vice versa. In other words we are looking to cross-fertilise our expertise across various markets.”
Walsh said that the company also planned to broaden its performance measurement universe – which currently only looks at the UK and Dutch market – to have a more European focus.
“We are looking at a combination of two things: in the markets that we have a good cross section, we would look at producing a universe for that individual country,” he said. “Secondly we could look at it on a pan-European basis, look at the big pension funds in countries such as Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Holland, Italy, Switzerland and France.
“We could look at what the trends are across the European countries. In the UK we have something called the billion pound club, which looks at all the pension funds above a billion pounds.
“The next step could be to look at a 10 billion euro pension club and to look at what are the trends happening in all the big funds across Europe. In what ways are they similar and how do they differ.”
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