Affiliated Managers Group Inc., a Boston asset management holding company that buys majority stakes in midsize investment firms, is launching a no-load mutual fund family to help bring its subsidiaries into the fund business.

The Managers AMG Funds will be distributed as a group and have the same legal structure, said senior vice president Lee Chertavian. The family is managed and distributed by Managers Funds LLC, a subsidiary of Affiliated, and subadvised by whichever subsidiary sponsors them. Managers, based in Norwalk, Conn., is also adviser to the Managers Funds, a family of nine no-load equity and fixed-income portfolios, with $2 billion of assets on Sept. 30.

The Managers AMG Funds are to be distributed to retail and institutional clients through the same intermediaries as the Managers Funds, including broker-dealers and bank trust departments.

Affiliated will not discourage subsidiaries from offering funds similar to others in the family, Mr. Chertavian said. Of Affiliated's 15 subsidiaries, which use a variety of investment strategies, only three previously offered proprietary mutual funds. The subsidiaries collectively managed $74 billion of assets on Sept. 30.

The first fund in the Managers AMG family, the Essex Aggressive Growth Fund, was launched Nov. 1 and has about $100 million of assets under management. The subadviser is Boston-based Essex Investment Management Co., which had about $7.8 billion of assets under management on Sept. 30.

Mr. Chertavian said the timing and type of additional funds will be up to the subsidiaries. There are no concrete plans for more funds, he said, but Affiliated is in discussions with five of its subsidiaries.

"By dipping into the talents of a particular group and pooling them under a collective umbrella, they have a good chance of success," said Burton J. Greenwald, a mutual fund consultant in Philadelphia. Other companies, such as Boston-based United Asset Management Corp., have had success with similar structures, he added.

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