Janus subsidiary Intech makes first Japan deal

Dai-ichi Life IBJ is teaming with the US fund manager to provide Japanese institutions with enhanced indexed product.

Enhanced Investment Technologies (Intech), a Florida-based subsidiary of Janus Capital Group, has been named subadvisor to a new Japanese-domiciled investment trust launched by Dai-ichi Life IBJ Asset Management (Diam).

Diam is Japan's largest manager of pension funds, but its product base is limited to the traditional asset classes, says Hiroki Yamada, deputy president in Tokyo. For the past two years, Diam has sought to diversify its product line into hedge funds and absolute-return products. The firm can generate some of these, but needs to turn to outside specialists, particularly for offshore investments.

In this case, Diam saw a need for an equity product that could produce a target return of 1.25-1.35% over the S&P500 index of US equities, on a yen-hedged basis. Intech will subadvise on the Diam Intech US Enhanced Index Fund. Diam hopes to raise Y3 billion ($28 million) at inception.

Yoshihiro Hamada, general manager for produce sales and development at Diam, says it was looking for a fund manager with a track record of minimizing downside risk and producing excess returns over the benchmark.

This marks Intech's first subadvisory role in Japan. The firm uses a mathematical, risk-managed approach to investing. It is headquartered in Palm Beach, Florida, and manages over $20 billion. It is now a subsidiary of Denver-based Janus, which manages $131 billion.

Diam was founded in 1999 following the merger of Dai-ichi Asset Management, IBJ-NW Asset Management and IJB Investment Trust Management, and now manages $35.4 billion of domestic pension assets, in addition to nearly $10 billion in domestic unit trusts.

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