Fortis' prime solution

Andrew Mascall-Robson fills the gap left by the departure of Bob MacPherson, whose own plans fall through.

Andrew Mascall-Robson has joined Fortis Prime Fund Solutions as commercial director based in Hong Kong. His appointment comes almost three months after regional sales and marketing director and co-CEO Robert MacPherson quit Fortis amidst rumours he was headhunted by Bank of New York to spearhead the establishment of its Asian fund administration presence.

In his new role Mascall-Robson will be responsible for client sales and marketing as well as business development. Mascall-Robson will report regionally to Tim Mann, the group's regional director of operations and acting CEO, and functionally to Joost Lobler, global director for sales.

Mascall-Robson's career in the financial markets spans almost 20 years, 14 of which he spent working in Asia and Japan. Most recently, he was executive director for WestLB Panmure in Japan.

Prior to that he was based in London heading up WestLB's global equity derivative sales. He has also spent a number of years in various positions at James Capel in Hong Kong and Tokyo.

Meanwhile, there is a twist in the tale for Fortis' Funds ex-director Bob MacPherson. In a letter dated May 5 and addressed to his friends in Hong Kong, MacPherson wrote, "Due to a certain material event in one of its operating affiliates, the contractual party for whom I was to commence employment effective June 1st 2004 has taken the decision to put its Asian expansion plans on hold indefinitely."

MacPherson says a settlement arrangement has been negotiated and that he will be relocating to Vancouver, Canada.

"I had hoped to spend another one of two years in Hong Kong but feel circumstances now advocate a change of direction," writes MacPherson.

Fortis Prime Solutions currently services 140 funds in the region, accounting for $8 billion in assets under administration. The team currently employs 70 people.

"Through our experience with offshore activities, including fund administration, financing trade positions, clearing transactions, safekeeping of portfolios and covering of short sales, we offer a 'one-stop-shop' for all of a fund's administrative and financing needs," says Joost Lobler.

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