GERMANY – SEI Investments has made its first move into Germany and has established an alliance with Commerzbank.

Commerzbank has selected SEI to provide its German clients with access to the SEI manager of managers product. Commerzbank decided to move into the multi-manager arena “because of its ability to manage risk and deliver consistent returns.”

The two companies will work together with Commerzbank providing relationship expertise and a distribution network, and SEI providing manager selection and monitoring.

New umbrella fund style “dachfonds” will be managed by ComInvest and will invest into SEI’s Dublin-domiciled multi-manager funds. They will be available to clients in Germany from January 2004 . SEI and ComInvest will both monitor the asset allocation and risk policies, with the initial client focus being the middle-sized corporate market.

SEI has also appointed a local sales director for Germany, Nadine Fugert. She will focus on the management of the SEI-Commerzbank relationship and will be based in Munich. Previously Fugert worked for JP Morgan Partners.

Commenting on SEI’s first move into Germany, managing director Karl Dasher said: “The pace of reform change in the German market is accelerating, and clients are increasingly looking globally for best of breed solutions….The relationship with Commerzbank is an important step in SEI’s expansion in Europe. It is one of Europe’s leading private sector banks with over 100 billion euros under management, and is noted for its innovation and commitment to the German corporate and private client market.”

As of the end of September, SEI administered 242 billion dollars (211 billion euros) in mutual fund and pooled assets, managed over 87 billion dollars in assets and processed almost 50 trillion of investment transactions annually.