Prudential, Japan’s Mitsui Plan Venture
Newark, N.J.-based Prudential Insurance Co. of America and Japan’s Mitsui Trust & Banking Co. unveiled plans for a mutual fund management venture, joining a flurry of cross-border financial alliances in Japan. The 50-50 undertaking between the largest U.S. life insurance company and Japan’s third-biggest trust bank aims to tap Japan’s estimated $8.51 trillion in personal assets, only a small portion of which is invested in mutual funds, called investment trusts in Japan. Mitsui Trust President Keiu Nishida told a news conference the venture is eyeing the scheduled end in December of a ban on domestic banks selling mutual funds, as Japan implements its “Big Bang” financial reforms. The venture--Prudential-Mitsui Trust Investments Co.--aims to manage about $14.3 billion worth of assets within five years of its formation and is expected to be capitalized at about $50 million, Nishida said. The venture requires approval from Japan’s Finance Ministry.