AIC Limited

AIC Limited

February 28, 2008 16:00 ET

AIC Announces Fund Changes

BURLINGTON, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 28, 2008) - In order to streamline its product offering and respond to client needs, AIC Limited today announced two planned changes to the products it offers. The first is to rename one of its Funds on or about April 14, 2008, as follows:

- AIC World Equity Fund to be renamed Copernican International Dividend Income Fund

"Previously, Copernican Capital Corp. products have only been accessible through TSX-listed closed-end funds. We were keen for Copernican to sponsor its first open-ended mutual fund and believe this change of name offers a great entry-point and should resonate well with investors seeking the type of differentiated offering this product provides", says Chris Lowe, Chief Executive Officer of Copernican Capital and a Senior Vice President and lead Portfolio Manager of AIC Investment Services Inc. In conjunction with the name change, the Fund will offer 3 new tax efficient classes of units. Class T6 and Class F-T6 units which will have an initial targeted 6% annual distribution (based on initial issue price of $10); while the Class O-T7 Units will have an initial targeted 7% annual distribution (based on initial issue price of $10).

In addition, AIC Limited also announced plans to merge two of its Funds on or before May 30, 2008, subject to securityholder and regulatory approval, and IRC recommendation. Details of the proposed mergers are as follows:

- AIC Global Premium Dividend Income Fund ("Terminating Fund") to merge into AIC Global Diversified Fund ("Continuing Fund"). This will be taking place on a taxable basis.

-- Upon completion of the merger, AIC Global Diversified Fund to be renamed AIC Global Premium Dividend Income Fund

-- To complete the merger AIC Global Diversified Fund will introduce Class T6 Units and Class F-T6 Units, into which units of the Terminating Fund will be exchanged

- AIC World Equity Corporate Class ("Terminating Fund") to merge into AIC Global Diversified Corporate Class ("Continuing Fund"). This will be taking place on a non-taxable basis.

-- Upon completion of the merger, AIC Global Diversified Corporate Class to be renamed AIC Global Premium Dividend Income Corporate Class

The investment strategies of AIC Global Diversified Fund and AIC Global Diversified Corporate Class will embrace world leading dividend paying companies and the investment strategy for Copernican International Dividend Income Fund will embrace world leading dividend paying companies based outside North America. These funds may from time to time hedge all or a portion of their non-Canadian dollar exposure back to the Canadian dollar and hold a portion of their assets in cash or cash equivalents in order to provide cover in respect of the writing (sale) of cash covered put options. Writing cash covered put options or covered call options are intended to generate additional returns and improve the tax efficiency of the funds' targeted distributions.

"AIC has a strong fund family and each of our Funds is managed consistently by a team of professionals who follow disciplined value investing principles," says Jonathan Wellum, AIC's Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer, who oversees a team of 17 portfolio managers and analysts. "We believe these Fund mergers will serve not only to streamline but also to strengthen our core suite of Canadian, American, Global and Fixed Income funds, positioning AIC as a provider of funds that seeks to deliver long-term wealth to our investors. Current and future securityholders can have confidence that all of our Funds seek to achieve above average long term performance with below average business risk."

The Fund mergers are subject to securityholder approval of the investors holding units/shares of the Terminating and Continuing Funds. For this purpose, meetings are scheduled to be held on or about May 15, 2008 at AIC's head office at 1375 Kerns Road, Burlington, Ontario. If approved, it is anticipated that the mergers will take place on or about May 30, 2008.

Effective as of the close of business on May 30, 2008, the Terminating Funds will cease distribution of new securities. Following the mergers, pre-authorized chequing plans, systematic withdrawal plans and dollar cost averaging plans, which had been established with respect to the Terminating Funds will be re-established with respect to the Continuing Funds unless securityholders advise otherwise.

Additionally, AIC Limited's Jonathan Wellum, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer, today announced that Pat Naccarato, Vice President and Portfolio Manager, will become the lead manager of the AIC Diversified Science & Technology Fund and the AIC Diversified Science & Technology Corporate Class, effective immediately. The funds were previously managed by Peter Hofstra, a former Vice President and Portfolio Manager, who has since left AIC. Further to his departure, Mr. Hofstra also steps away from co-management responsibilities on the AIC Value Fund, AIC World Equity Fund, and AIC Global Diversified Fund, along with their Corporate Class equivalents.

Mr. Naccarato is also the lead manager of the AIC Value Fund, and AIC Value Corporate Class, and was recently named to a team responsible for the management of the AIC World Equity Fund and AIC Global Diversified Fund, along with their Corporate Class equivalents.

Pat Naccarato

Pat brings 20 years of industry experience as a Portfolio Manager and sector analyst. Prior to joining AIC, Pat was Vice President of U.S. equities and senior partner at Philips Hager & North where he was the lead manager on the U.S. Growth Fund. He also held the positions of Vice President of U.S. equities at TAL Investment Management and U.S. equity analyst at Manulife. Pat holds a Bachelor of Mathematics degree and an MBA (finance specialization) from University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University, respectively. He also holds a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.

AIC commenced operations in 1985 and has grown to become one of Canada's largest privately-held mutual fund companies with assets under management of approximately $7 billion.

Contact Information

  • AIC Limited, Burlington, ON
    Terri Oswald
    Director, Media Relations
    (905) 331-4242, ext. 4345 or 1-888-710-4242, ext. 4345
    Email: toswald@aic.com
    Website: www.aic.com