Bruno Zutterling, Director for Investment Fund Services at Clearstream, knew where to look for clients of the Vestima+ mutual fund order routing platform he has created. What better place to start than CDC IXIS, the French banking group where he previously worked, and which originally designed the technology that lies behind Vestima+?
IXIS, the recently re-named subsidiary of the restructured CDC IXIS banking group in France, will implement Clearstream’s Vestima+ service early next year to receive fund orders coming from Clearstream’s customers that wish to gain access to French domestic funds.
“This agreement from another major player in the French market recognises the efforts done by IXIS to enhance automation rates in the fund industry,” says Zutterling. “By complying with French market practices, Clearstream enables fund distributors to access domestic markets as transparently as international ones. This highlights the value added by Vestima+ as an order processing hub adopting a multi-domestic approach.”
IXIS – which is now part of the AA-rated Caisse d’Epargne Group- owns a third party fund management group that runs Euros 339.5 billion in assets.
Clearstream says that Vestima+ enables fund distributors with Clearstream accounts to settle French domestic mutual funds on a DvP basis, while funds are centralised with IXIS in Paris. Vestima+ will communicate with IXIS using SWIFT messages, and the template issued by the French Fund Market Practice Group (FFPMG).
“The European Fund Industry is desperately lacking automation for fund transactions in the areas of both order processing and secured settlement,” says Jean-Marc Eyssautier, Head of Operations for custody and banking services at IXIS in Paris. “By combining the Vestima+ service with SWIFT communication standards and a true DVP process, IXIS will provide our customers with a very secure way of distributing their funds outside of France. Clearstream’s new initiative to deliver a fully automated process for cross-border distribution is combining security of the French domestic infrastructure with high flexibility of the new Vestima+ service.”
The Vestima+ service is initially aimed at buyers in France, Germany and Luxembourg. It will be launched on 22 January 2005.