Deutsche Bank, through its global mutual fund arm DWS Investments, today announced details of its first Shari`a compliant mutual fund capability. A specialist fund range, to be marketed as DWS Noor Islamic Funds 1), has been developed to meet the specific needs of Islamic investors. Initially, the range will be offered to retail and institutional investors in UAE and Bahrain, with plans to expand the offering to other countries in MENA, Asia and Europe in 2007.
The first five DWS Noor Islamic Funds were officially launched in the region today:
“With DWS Noor Islamic Funds, our Islamic clients can rely on a strictly Shari`a compliant framework while benefiting from attractive international investment opportunities usually only available as conventional mutual fund products,” said Scott Jaffray, Chief Investment Officer for DWS Investments in MENA, and architect of the DWS Noor Islamic Funds range.
“DWS Investments is today among the top ten asset managers globally, with steady growth anticipated in key emerging regions such as the Middle East and Asia. We aim to continually expand the DWS Noor offering into further asset classes and investment styles, delivering a range of Islamic products with the same breadth and depth as our conventional mutual fund range,” added Mr Jaffray.
The DWS Noor Islamic Funds range distinguishes itself from its competitors through the initial application of a Shari`a compliant screening process across the entire spectrum of the global investment universe. Investors will benefit from the potential to invest in all regions and sectors, including the option to participate in IPO’s.
The funds are further differentiated by the pedigree of its Shari`a Advisor, Dar Al Istithmar, whose Shari`a Board comprises five of the world’s leading Shari`a scholars – Dr Hussain Hamed Hassan 2), Dr Ali AlQaradaghi 3), Dr Abdul Sattar Abu Ghuddah 4), Dr Mohamed Elgari 5) and Dr Mohamed Daud Bakar 6).
Dar Al Istithmar is a Shari`a advisory service created through a joint venture between Deutsche Bank, the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies (Oxford University) and investment adviser Russell Wood. The firm offers cutting-edge academic and market research to institutions offering Islamic financial services. Dar Al Istithmar was the winner of the Euromoney 2006 award for Best Islamic Assurance and Advisory Services.
The Shari`a Board provides a holistic oversight over the funds’ legal documents, structure and investment process. A separate and discreet legal entity has been established to ensure full independence from Deutsche Bank’s conventional fund business.
The Shari`a structuring team responsible for launching the DWS Noor Islamic Funds is based in the Dubai branch of Deutsche Bank. Deutsche Bank’s on-the-ground presence in MENA ensures the manager can respond quickly to changing market conditions while developing new products to meet client demand. Deutsche Bank has been an active participant in Islamic finance for many years, and aspires to become the leading Islamic finance and investment banking organization in the region.
For a minimum investment of US$1,000, DWS Noor Islamic Funds are now available to institutional and retail investors in UAE and Bahrain through central bank authorised distribution companies.
For further information, please call:
Elaine Bartleet +44 20 7545 4907
Press & Media Relations
Bell Pottinger Middle East
Tom Mollo +971 50 550 4203
Fiona Piper +971 50 422 0405
About Deutsche Bank
Deutsche Bank is a leading global investment bank with a strong and profitable private clients franchise. A leader in Germany and Europe, the bank is continuously growing in North America, Asia and key emerging markets. With Euro 1,097 billion in assets and 67,474 employees in 73 countries, Deutsche Bank offers unparalleled financial services throughout the world. The bank competes to be the leading global provider of financial solutions for demanding clients creating exceptional value for its shareholders and people.
About DWS Investments
As the global mutual fund arm of Deutsche Bank Group, DWS Investments draws on the strength and expertise of one of the world’s leading investment banks. With more than Euro 248 billion of funds under management globally, DWS is one of the top 10 largest mutual fund managers worldwide 7), and the largest mutual fund company in its home country, Germany 8). DWS Investments has pursued a consistent and successful business strategy focusing on performance, innovation, quality and trust. The highly awarded business has been named Germany’s top fund manager by Standard & Poor’s for the past 12 years. Founded in Germany in 1956, DWS is a key local player in Europe's most important markets; operates in the United States under the DWS Scudder brand; and is expanding into key emerging regions such as the Middle East and Asia.
1) DWS Noor translates as ‘the new shining light’ in Islamic asset management – an
expression for the guiding principles of the company’s Islamic fund range.
2) Dr Hussain Hamid Hassan is a member of the Shari`a Boards of many institutions such
as Emirates Islamic Bank, Dubai Islamic Bank, and Islamic Development Bank.
3) Dr Ali AlQaradaghi serves on Shari`a Boards of firms in Qatar as well as Emirates
Islamic Bank, Dubai Islamic Bank in UAE and First Investment in Kuwait.
4) Dr Abdul Sattar Abu Ghuddah is a Shari`a Advisor and Director of Department of
Financial Instruments at Al-Baraka Investment Co. in Saudi Arabia and an active
member of institutions such as Islamic Fiqh Academy.
5) Dr Mohamed Elgari is Shari`a Advisor to many institutions including HSBC Amanah, Abu
Dhabi Islamic Bank, Bahrain Islamic Bank and Dow Jones Islamic Index.
6) Dr Mohamed Daud Bakar is CEO of the International Institute of Islamic Finance and
member of Shari`a Boards of many institutions in Malaysia and around the world.
7) Source: AAM (June 30, 2006), Strategic Insight, FERI FMI, ITA (September 30, 2006)
8) Source: BVI, October 31, 2006
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