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T. Rowe Price readies first public investment trust for Japan

US asset manager seeks to woo more retail investors

T. Rowe's Japan unit will offer the trust, which invests in select growth stocks around the world.   © Reuters

TOKYO/NEW YORK -- U.S. asset management company T. Rowe Price will launch its first publicly offered investment trust in Japan next month, expanding its focus in the country beyond institutional investors to reach retail players as well.

T. Rowe's Japan unit will offer the trust, which invests in select growth stocks around the world, to retail investors through Nomura Securities beginning May 28. It will take initial applications from May 13 to 27.

T. Rowe held about $1.08 trillion in assets under management as of the end of March, putting it among the top 30 asset management companies globally. Much of the figure comes from retail investors in the U.S., but in Japan the company does not have products available to retail investors under its own brand name.

The company has been operating in Japan since 1982, and started providing investment products to Japanese investors in 1999, primarily through advising local asset management firms. The firm also launched a Japanese pension business in 2005, offering services to Japanese corporate pension funds.

Last year, T. Rowe took another step toward localization and started operating as a locally incorporated company, led by country head Naoyuki Honda.

Last November, T. Rowe launched its first onshore fund, the T. Rowe Price U.S. Growth Stock ITM Fund, a private fund available to Japanese institutional investors.

The new publicly offered investment trust will be T. Rowe's first public fund aimed at retail investors.

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