GERMANY - Deutsche Bank is considering taking a stake in a US or UK hedge fund, the bank's chief executive Josef Ackermann says.

"We would consider acquiring a stake in a US or UK hedge fund as a way of broadening our range of investments," Ackermann said during Deutsche's annual news conference in Frankfurt yesterday.

No further details were provided.

In Germany, Deutsche's retail fund arm DWS is the current market leader for hedge funds domiciled in the country. DWS has €600m invested in six single German hedge funds and one fund-of-hedge fund.

In early December, DWS had up to €800m invested in its hedge funds but the figure has since declined due partly to investor outflows.

DWS' German hedge fund volume is divided equally between family offices and institutional investors.

Demand for German hedge funds as a whole is estimated at around €2.5bn, well behind initial projections before their launch in January 2004.

Separately, Allianz Global Investors' German unit said that Dirk Klee had been named its new head of distribution for mutual funds. Klee is also part of the AGI unit's management in Frankfurt.

Klee was previously a sales executive at the German arm of bond fund specialist Pimco in Munich. Pimco is an AGI subsidiary.

A spokesman said Klee's successor at the Pimco unit had not yet been named.