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Weird and wonderful ETF firm eyes London office

Weird and wonderful ETF firm eyes London office

The firm behind Alliance Bernstein’s debut exchange traded funds (ETFs), as well as a ‘biblically responsible’ ETF, is considering launching into the UK.

Wealth Manager understands that Exchange Traded Concepts (ETC), a white-label ETF provider which helps firms bring their ETF ideas to market, is planning to open an office in London as it looks to enter the UK market.

Jay Baker, director of capital markets at ETC, confirmed the company is ‘seriously investigating’ plans to launch in the UK, but said that nothing has yet been set in stone and he declined to give any more details.

The firm assisted Alliance Bernstein (AB) in launching two ETFs based on its in-house research back in October 2017.

These came after AB’s head of global quantitative European equity strategy Inigo Fraser-Jenkins famously penned a note in 2016, warning that passive investing is ‘worse than Marxism’.

It has also helped launch several niche ETFs, including the James Biblically Responsible Investment ETF, an anti-gay ETF which is designed to exclude companies that are ‘involved in practices and products objectionable from a biblical perspective’.

ETC also aided UBS in the launch of both a lesbian, gay, transgender and bisexual ETF, which invests in companies with good employment equality practices, and a Patriotic Employers ETF, which invests in firms providing ‘strong support’ for US military veterans.

The potential launch comes after a string of high profile figures in the ETF industry have set up white-label businesses in the UK, including ETF Securities founders Hector McNeil and Graeme Dewar.

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