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LaSalle Global Fund Services launches Dublin operation

LaSalle Global Fund Services, a Chicago-based member of the ABN Amro group, has established a subsidiary in Dublin's International Financial Services Centre to provide fund administration, custody and treasury services to the European alternative investment industry.

The announcement comes soon after the launch of LaSalle Global Fund Services in the US to complement the global structured finance services business of parent LaSalle Bank. The firm is also planning to launch a fund services operation in Asia before the end of this year.

The bank is already a leader in the structured products and securitisation industry as the leading global commercial mortgage backed securities trustee and the second largest global provider of collateralised debt obligation trustee services.

According to LaSalle, the move into the fund services sector comes in response to demand from existing LaSalle clients, with an increasing number of hedge funds now using CDOs, collateralised loan obligations and asset-backed securities within their portfolios.

Says Jim Jendra, senior vice-president and head of LaSalle Global Fund Services: 'With LaSalle Bank's proven record as a global provider of securitisation and trustee services and the expanded network provided by our parent company ABN Amro, LaSalle Global Fund Services is well-positioned to be a significant supplier of fund administration services in Europe.'

Morgan Downey, managing director of the European business, adds: 'The demands of the asset management industry are growing. LaSalle Global Fund Services is suited to meet these expectations and deliver a fresh approach to this evolving market. LaSalle has invested in finding the right people and technology and we strongly believe we now have the strategy, systems and team in place to be successful.'

In addition to Downey, the management team of LaSalle Global Fund Services Europe consists of Suzanne Keane, head of fund accounting and client management, Marion Moran, head of shareholder services, Joanne Gill, head of operations, Barry O'Brien, head of business development, and Peter Igoe, head business analyst.

LaSalle, which has installed Advent Software's Geneva and Partner platforms to support investment accounting, administration and reporting, currently has 14 staff in Dublin but plans to double numbers by the end of this year and reach a head count of 70 by the end of 2008. The firm is targeting a total of around EUR2bn in assets under administration by the end this year and about EUR5bn 12 months later.

LaSalle Bank's global securities and trust services has served as trustee, custodian or agent to more than USD1.trn in assets, offering securitisation trustee and agency services, corporate trust, institutional custody, escrow services and like-kind exchange transactions. The bank is the largest headquartered in Chicago, with USD72.9bn billion in assets, and has retail and commercial operations in 20 states and 26 cities across the US.

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