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FRM expands Asian fund of hedge funds presence to Hong Kong and Seoul

Fund of hedge funds manager Financial Risk Management has announced plans to expand significantly its Asian operations, launched in 2000 with the establishment of a presence in Tokyo, with new offices in Hong Kong and Seoul.

The firm, which manages USD15bn in assets for institutions and other sophisticated investors, including around 300 pension funds, now has more than 20 client service and investment professionals in Tokyo, and added an office in Sydney in 2001.

The Hong Kong office will open in June and will comprise both investment and client service staff, strengthening FRM's research coverage of Asian hedge funds and providing enhanced client service for the firm's growing base of investors in the region.

The Seoul office is scheduled to open later in the year to begin work on the process of obtaining licensing from the Korean regulatory authorities in 2009. The office will also provide client service to Korean institutional clients, which are currently served through the Tokyo office.

'The hedge fund industry is now global, and as a fund of hedge funds group we believe it is essential to maintain a research presence in all regions where compelling hedge fund investment opportunities exist,' says FRM founder and group chairman Blaine Tomlinson. 'The Asian hedge fund industry is undergoing rapid growth in both size and quality, as structural changes in Asian markets create a rich opportunity set for investors.

'Our Hong Kong office will complement our long-established hedge fund research presence in London, New York and Tokyo, and significantly strengthen our coverage of Asia. We anticipate increasing our allocations to Asian hedge funds, and our newly launched hedge fund seeding business, FRM Capital Advisors, is also seeking to invest in new managers in the region.'

Financial Risk Management chief executive Paul Dunning adds: 'During the past decade, FRM has provided education and investment opportunities to hundreds of institutions looking to benefit from the absolute returns that hedge funds can provide.

'We are in the early stages of a global trend toward increased institutional investment in hedge funds, and we are making a significant investment in resources to serve more Asian institutions and major distribution partners as they increase their hedge fund allocations.'

Founded in 1991, FRM currently has more than 200 employees in its offices London, New York, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Guernsey and Sydney.

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