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Norshield registration suspended


Date: Tuesday, May 24, 2005
Author: Investment Executive.com

Firm unable to adequately explain investment structure, regulator says

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

By  IE Staff

The Ontario Securities Commission issued temporary orders on Friday, suspending the registration of Norshield Asset Management (Canada) Ltd. and imposing terms and conditions of the registration of Norshield and Olympus United Group Inc.

Norshield is the manager and adviser of a variety of hedge funds and alternative investment products offered across Canada by Olympus. These products are sold as shares in the Olympus United Funds Corp. (Olympus Funds). At present, Olympus Funds has approximately 2,000 shareholders, the majority of whom are resident in Ontario.

On May 2, 2005, Olympus Funds announced the deferral of redemptions in a number of its funds. On May 13, 2005, the registration of Olympus was suspended because Olympus was operating without a registered trading and compliance officer. To date, Olympus had not sought registration for a trading adviser on Ontario nor has it designated a compliance officer. Olympus therefore does not meet the registration requirements that would enable it to trade on behalf of its Ontario clients.

Since May 16, 2005, the OSC, the Autorité des Marchés Financiers and the Mutual Fund Dealers Association have been conducting a coordinated review of the operations of Norshield and Olympus in Quebec and Ontario.

During the review, Norshield and Olympus have been unable or unwilling to adequately explain the investment structure offered to clients nor have they provided an adequate explanation as to the flow and location of client funds.

The OSC says the temporary orders suspending registration, precluding redemptions and requiring retention of a monitor by May 25, 2005, were made in the public interest to assist in protecting client funds while the joint review is ongoing.

The hearing to consider the extension of the ordes is scheduled to take place on Friday, June 3 in Toronto.