Calastone provides STP solution for Asian-UK mutual fund transactions

London - 26 May 2009

Calastone Limited, the independent cross-border transaction network for the mutual funds industry, today announced that Baring Asset Management (Barings) is set to reap the benefits of SE Asian investment opportunities by offering STP to distributors using the ISO20022 message standard. By routing their Asian orders through Calastone, Barings becomes immediately ISO20022 compatible without requiring any technological investment and brings improved efficiency to their order routing platform.

The Asian Funds Automation Consortium (AFAC) has been leading the effort to drive straight-through processing initiatives in Asia Pacific and has encouraged the mutual fund industry to use ISO20022 messaging standards.

By connecting to Calastone’s transaction network, participants are able to send or receive instructions using their preferred means of communication in any format, such as flat files, FIX, Swift, ISO15022, ISO20022, XML or proprietary formats and will benefit from fully electronic STP throughout the transaction lifecycle regardless of size or technological capabilities. Calastone’s participants are able to lower cost, and gain visibility and control of their order flow providing all parties the ability to react to exceptions quickly and efficiently. Without the need to invest in technology or membership/joining fees, efficiencies from STP are available to the entire industry immediately.

Commenting on the announcement, Peter Hermans, Director of Client Services of Calastone said, “Calastone continues to expand its global interoperability to the funds market and we are delighted that Barings is now able to conform to the agreed AFAC standards of ISO20022. For the first time, mutual fund participants around the globe can enjoy fully electronic STP cross-border irrespective of preferred messaging protocols. In these challenging times, the Asian markets offer significant potential investment opportunities and Calastone is well positioned to extend this service to all fund providers, distributors and transfer agents.The cross-border business presents a huge opportunity in these markets. By connecting to Calastone, participants are able to overcome inefficiencies and explore the potential presented by cross-border transactions.”

Nick LeBrun, Head of Mutual Fund Dealing of Baring Asset Management added, “Barings has been benefiting from Calastone’s transaction network since its inception in May 2008. By extending our use of their network to reach Asia, we are able to reduce costs and risks, and increase efficiency; ultimately providing our clients with greater choice and an improved service.”

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