Nanotech mutual fund formed in Europe

Oct. 15, 2002 — Activest, the Munich, Germany-based investment group of HypoVereinsbank, is creating a mutual fund consisting of nanotechnology-related companies, called Activest Lux NanoTech. (Lux is for Luxembourg, where the fund’s transactions take place.)

The fund will be available in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Luxembourg, according to Thiemo Lang, an Activest portfolio manager. An initial subscription period began Oct. 1 and will continue through Nov. 1. The initial issuing price is 52.5 euros (about $51.50) which includes a 5 percent front-end fee in addition to administrative fees. A 10 share minimum applies during the subscription period. The fund is due to list on Nov. 4.

Although the fund is not available to U.S. investors, approximately 70 percent will be composed of U.S. stocks. The fund’s managers are investigating ways to make it available to qualified U.S. institutional investors in the future but could not say when, or if, that would happen. The top three holdings will be Veeco Instruments Inc., Varian Inc. and Kopin Corp. “The most important group will be the companies who are doing the process equipment and the measuring instruments because we think … they will have the first profit from the move into nanotechnology,” Lang said.

Companies doing process equipment and analytical instruments will account for 35 percent of the fund’s holdings, alongside companies working in thin films, display technology, semiconductors, biotechnology and nanomaterials. Diversified large caps like IBM will comprise 18 percent of the fund.

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