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Irish fund industry assets top USD1.6trn, says Lipper

Funds serviced in Ireland reached USD1,633.3bn in assets at the end of June, reflecting annual growth of almost 35 per cent from USD1,212.4bn 12 months earlier, according to the 13th edition of Lipper's Ireland Fund Encyclopaedia.

The report says total net assets of Irish-domiciled funds reached USD1,100.1bn, up from USD806.6bn in mid-2006, in 2,894 funds and sub-funds.

'Ireland's fund servicing industry has posted its largest asset growth in three years,' says Ed Moisson, director of European fiduciary operations at Lipper. 'Our research shows there are now 5,646 funds serviced by the industry.'

Among fund servicing companies, State Street has maintained the largest market share both for fund assets under administration (USD228.8bn) and under custody (USD239.6bn). Bank of New York ranks second in terms of administration (USD205.7bn ) and third for custody (USD181.1bn), while JP Morgan had the second largest market share among custodians (USD199.2bn ) and third for administrators (USD170.6bn).

Northern Trust was fourth in each category (USD135.8bn under administration, USD125.3bn under custody), and PFPC International was fifth among administrators (USD102.0bn) while PFPC Bank was fifth for custody (USD77.7bn).

Among Dublin's professional firms, A&L Goodbody now offers legal advice to the largest number of funds serviced in Ireland, with 930, just ahead of Dillon Eustace (900 funds). They are followed by Matheson Ormsby Prentice (469), Arthur Cox (410), William Fry (369) and McCann FitzGerald (263).

PricewaterhouseCoopers has maintained its lead across all funds audited in Ireland with 1,931. Second is KPMG with 1,237 funds, followed by Ernst & Young (979), Deloitte & Touche (445) and Grant Thornton (137).

Of 342 fund management companies with funds domiciled in Dublin, US fund management companies account for the largest proportion with total net assets of USD485.4bn. Among fund promoters, Barclays/BGI has USD134.1bn in assets under management, followed by Goldman Sachs (USD81.9bn), Russell Investment (USD53.8bn), HSBC (USD37.3bn) and Vanguard (USD36.6bn).

'Since its establishment, continued strong growth has been the hallmark of the Irish funds industry, and as the Lipper Ireland Fund Encyclopaedia reveals, 2007 was another excellent year for the industry,' says Gary Palmer, chief executive of the Irish Funds Industry Association.

'Total net assets serviced in Ireland have now comfortably surpassed the USD1.5trn mark, and as the Irish funds industry approaches its 20th anniversary, we are looking forward to reaching the USD2trn milestone. Ireland is now recognised as an experienced and established centre of excellence for investment fund services and our continued objective is to maintain and promote the attractiveness of Ireland as a jurisdiction for the global funds industry.'

Damien Hennelly, business development manager for IDA Ireland, says: 'The growth of both Irish-domiciled funds of 36 per cent and total funds serviced from Ireland of 35 per cent highlights the ongoing focus of the industry and its partners on improving the high standards previously set in terms of providing attractive solutions to asset managers.

'The new fast-track approval regime for Qualifying Investor Funds, the ongoing attraction to Ireland of new service providers to the industry and other supporting initiatives are evidence of how Ireland continues to strengthen its competitive offering as a major global centre for both alternative and traditional asset management groups.'

The Ireland Fund Encyclopaedia is published annually by Lipper, having been launched by Fitzrovia International, which was acquired by Lipper in 2004. Similar reports cover the fund markets in Guernsey, Jersey and Luxembourg.

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