Credit Suisse Raises $420 Million to Create Mexico Fund

Credit Suisse Group AG raised $420 million for a new investment fund focused on Mexico, as Switzerland’s second-largest bank taps clients in an economy forecast to grow twice as fast as Brazil’s.

The Credit Suisse Mexico Credit Opportunities Trust raised the money from institutional investors, including some of Mexico’s largest pension funds, Zurich-based Credit Suisse said in an e-mailed statement. The fund, managed by Andres Borrego, will be listed on the Mexican stock exchange, said Suzanne Fleming, a New York-based spokeswoman.

The fund seeks “to capture opportunities presented by structural inefficiencies in the Mexican credit market through investments in a diversified portfolio of alternative assets with debt-like characteristics,” the bank said in the statement. Targets include debt instruments such as loans and bonds, Fleming said.

Investors outside Mexico have poured a record amount into fixed-income securities in the country this year. Through Oct. 24, mutual funds, pensions and hedge funds based outside the country have put $6.81 billion into Mexican fixed-income securities, according to data compiled by Cambridge, Massachusetts-based research firm EPFR Global.

Latin America’s second-biggest economy will expand 3.8 percent this year, according to the median of 30 forecasts compiled by Bloomberg. That’s about twice the pace of growth projected in the U.S. and Brazil.

‘Liquid Strategies’

Credit Suisse is adding to its stable of hedge funds under a plan to offer customers more investment vehicles focused on stocks, bonds and “liquid strategies.” Emerging markets have been a theme over the past two years. In 2010 the bank and three of its shareholders started a $1 billion fund to invest in emerging markets. Another fund was started for Brazil, according to the e-mailed statement.

The bank is in talks with Qatar to form a venture that will invest in the Middle East and North Africa and may expand later to include other emerging and frontier markets, said a person with knowledge of the decision who asked not to be named, citing the sensitivity of the matter.

This week the company named Bob Jain, head of Credit Suisse’s stocks division for the past four years, to a new post overseeing about $60 billion of assets, according to an internal memo obtained by Bloomberg News and confirmed by Fleming. They include hedge funds, credit strategies, funds of hedge funds and commodities, she said.

Borrego, who’s based in New York, has transferred to the money-management division from the investment bank, according to the statement. Manuel Ramos, formerly the head risk manager and trader for the Latin American financing group, will help run the fund, the bank said.

The new fund will be structured as a closed-end structured credit trust, according to statement. The trust issued the peso equivalent of $420 million in equity securities known as Certificados de Capital de Desarrollo.

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