Markaz selected by SFM to be Investment Advisor of Middle East Fund

09/06/2009

Markaz and SFM Group, a globally recognized leading European provider of investment vehicles based in Luxembourg, signed an agreement, whereby “Markaz” will act as the Investment Advisor of WIOF Middle East Performance Fund.

The Fund is targeting both institutional and retail investors in Europe, Asia, and Middle East, and will invest in MENA Markets to achieve the best possible return. The Fund is registered with the Capital Market Authorities in Luxembourg. The fund is also UCITS III compliant signifying very high levels of compliance, guidelines and transparency. The subscription and redemption are daily.

Mr. Manaf Alhajeri, General Manager of Markaz said "We thank SFM Group for entrusting Markaz with the management of the Middle East Performance Fund. This trust lies on an excellent track-record spanning many years and the capacity to propose custom made investment solutions to institutional investors. The Middle East possesses some enticing investment opportunities, and despite the financial crisis, is forecasted to be the second fastest economy after emerging Asia owing to large financial surpluses, massive oil reserves, and liquidity As per agency projections, the Middle East region is expected to grow by 2.5% during 2009 while the world economy is expected to contract by 1.3%. In light of economic recovery, the region is expected to bounce back much more swiftly than developed world."

Mr. Derek Chambers, Chairman & CEO of SFM Group said “We select our partners based on their reputation in the field and performance track record, and our due diligence is stringent and extensive. Our objective is to offer the best of breed local asset managers to sophisticated investors interested in emerging markets.”

“The Fund will invest in MENA Markets, as we can see attractive investment opportunities over the long term, in order to benefit from the wide spectrum of fundamentally strong and growing sectors. It completes nicely our range of emerging market funds.”

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Photo Caption: Mr. Derek Chambers, Chairman & CEO of SFM Group and Mr. Manaf Alhajeri, General Manager of Kuwait Financial Centre "Markaz"
About SFM Group

The SFM Group, established in 1999, is a pioneer of excellence in bespoke financial investment solutions, the SFM Group are specialists in the field of product design and engineering, distribution and marketing strategy. The SFM Group head office is based in Luxembourg – globally recognized as the leading European centre for investment funds and financial engineering. Currently SFM Group has seven offices in Europe, mainly in the CEE region, plus an office in Singapore, covering the rapid developments regionally in Asia for SFM Group. With distribution partners in more than 30 countries in Europe, Asia and Middle East, and 100,000 clients using their products, The SFM Groups’ ”assets under administration” is over USD 380 million as at the end of May 2009, and currently an average of well over 2,000 new clients are being added every month. SFM Group employs a dedicated team of more than 50 staff; their diverse social and cultural backgrounds providing a spectrum of regional and local knowledge, language ability, experience and expertise.

About Kuwait Financial Centre “Markaz”

Kuwait Financial Centre S.A.K ‘Markaz’, with total assets under management of over KD 781 million as of March 31, 2009 was established in 1974, and has become one of the leading asset management and investment banking institutions in the Arabian Gulf Region. Markaz was listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) in 1997; and was awarded a BBB+ corporate rating by Capital Intelligence Ltd.