RIGA - Parex Asset Management announced last week that it planned to form subsidiary management companies in Russia and Ukraine, as well as Lithuania.
Newly appointed President Roberts Idelsons said at a press conference that Parex Asset Management "should build on our dominant position in Latvia to lead the development of asset management in the region as a whole."
Bank managers said that the lack of strong competition in Russia and Ukraine, as well as the embryonic stage of pension reform, played a key role in deciding to expand operations in the East.
"There are certainly significant opportunities created by the combination of our expertise and the growth of financial markets in neighboring countries," said Idelsons, who earlier headed Suprema's operations in Latvia.
Parex Asset Management is also focusing on entering the Lithuanian market. Guntars Vitols, who is being replaced by Idelsons but will remain on board as an adviser, told Dienas Bizness that the company would concentrate on offering second-level pension investment plans in Lithuania.
Parex Asset Management said in a statement that its position in the Baltic states had been strengthened in the first six months of 2003 through a 35 percent growth in assets under management. Half of this increase has been generated from new clients, bringing the size of its client base to around 500.