FRANCE- AXA Investment Management has announced the launch of a specific asset backed security investment group to manage and expand the group’s e3bn asset backed security business.

Based in Paris, the ABS group comprises Emmanuelle Nasse Bridier as team leader, Stephane Handjian as portfolio manager and Romain Riegert research analyst.

The new group will feed off AXA’s structured credit and securitisation teams working in fixed income credit research, fixed income credit investment and securitisation and structured credit.

It will manage diversified Euro-denominated ABS funds and will continue to invest this asset class in structured products either through dedicated funds, credit or money market funds.

Robert Kyprianou, co-head of securities investment management at AXA said: “the diversification and risk profile opportunities of this asset class are very attractive to investors plus they provide synthetic exposures not directly related to a corporate or a financial institution.

New ABS issuance in Europe rose 45% in 2001. “With the creation of our dedicated ABS group, we aim to grow our capabilities significantly in this area,” says Kyprianou.