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BlackRock completes acquisition of Credit Suisse’s ETF business


BlackRock has completed the acquisition of Credit Suisse’s exchange traded funds (ETF) business, in a move that extends the firm’s footprint in Switzerland and brings a broader range of opportunities to Swiss investors through its iShares ETF platform.

The acquisition complements the existing iShares ETF range with funds domiciled in Switzerland, Ireland and Luxembourg.
As of 1 July, the combined firm will operate under the iShares name. All 58 of Credit Suisse’s ETFs will be re-branded and re-named and begin trading as iShares ETFs on the exchanges where such funds are listed. ISIN codes and identifiers (e.g. Bloomberg tickers) will remain un-changed.
iShares has operated in the Swiss market and served local investors since 2003. With this acquisition, iShares now provides the broadest range of ETF exposures domiciled in Switzerland. As at the end of May 2013, this range of Swiss domiciled products had assets of CHF 7.7 billion ($8.1 billion) across equities, fixed income and gold funds.
The combined business manages a highly liquid suite of funds that invest in leading Swiss indexes, such as the Swiss benchmark index SMI, Swiss Domestic Government Bonds Indices (SBI) as well as ETFs on physical gold.
David Blumer, Head of Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) for BlackRock, says: “Switzerland is an important market for us. BlackRock has been helping Swiss clients meet their financial objectives for 10 years. We believe that more investors will have an interest in owning financial products denominated in Swiss francs and we want to serve them. This acquisition is just one sign of BlackRock’s commitment to Switzerland and it deepens and expands our presence in this market.”
Joe Linhares, Head of iShares EMEA, says: “We are very excited that starting from today, we can move forward as one firm. This acquisition has combined two leading ETF providers with a common culture of responsible innovation, high quality products and a commitment to developing and expanding the ETF market. We’d like to thank our partners at Credit Suisse for their cooperation throughout this process, and we look forward to demonstrating the quality of our products and services to our new and existing Swiss clients.”
Christian Gast, Head of iShares Switzerland, says: “This acquisition means that we can better serve Swiss clients and provide the efficient, innovative and transparent products that today’s investors demand. iShares now has the largest and most experienced team of client managers dedicated to the Swiss market, covering all major areas and languages. Investors will also be able to leverage the expertise of our investment strategists and capital markets team, who are focused on supporting them to make informed decisions about ETFs.”

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