DST International (DSTi), provider of international business solutions for the financial services industry, has announced plans to open a Vietnam office. The firmÆs latest Asian office will be located in Ho Chi Minh City and is poised to open for business in the second quarter of 2007.

The announcement is the second Vietnam in announcement in a matter of days after DSTi disclosed another mandate win in Vietnam. According to DSTi, the firm has signed an agreement with VinaCapital, one of VietnamÆs largest investment companies, to implement its investment management solution, HiPortfolio/3.

The decision to implement HiPortfolio/3 follows a period of massive growth for VinaCapital. Since it was founded in 2003 to manage the Vietnam Opportunity Fund, VinaCapitalÆs assets under management have grown from around $10 million to approximately $850 million. Most recently, the Vietnam-based firm launched a technology frontier fund for domestic investors with Silicon ValleyÆs Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ).

Like other clients in Vietnam and Asia-Pacific, VinaCapital will utilize DSTiÆs investment management solution for accounting and portfolio management, while cutting out manual procedures and promoting data accuracy and shortening response times.

ôVinaCapitalÆs investment portfolio is characterised by the presence of industry leaders, so when we decided to invest in a new fund accounting and portfolio management solution, the choice of an industry leader like DSTi came naturally,ö says Tuan Pham, VinaCapital CFO. ôDSTÆs experience in and commitment to Vietnam makes DSTi especially attractive to us. This solution will help us to boost efficiency and productivity, and help ensure that we can continue to provide the highest levels of support and responsiveness to our clients as the market in Vietnam develops further.ö

As with many investors and banks, Vietnam has become a key market for DSTi in recent time. The European-based technology provider now counts five clients in the country following the VinaCapital mandate. In late 2006, it also tasted success with Vietnamese fund management firm Dragon Capital, which implemented the first stage of HiPortfolio/3. According to Dragon Capital, the second phase of implementation will conclude in the near term.

DSTi also counts Prudential and Manulife as clients in Vietnam. Outside of the investor realm, the service provider also has Ho Chi Minh Securities Trading Center (HoSTC) as a user of its exchange order matching solution.

The office opening in Ho Chi Minh City will complement DSTiÆs existing regional presence in China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand.

ôDSTi now has five clients in the country,ö says Rhonda Lepsch, Asia-Pacific CEO.

The success of HiPortfolio/3 is not limited to Vietnam either. In December 2006, DSTi announced that it had signed an agreement with IndonesiaÆs First State Investments (FSI). FSI, a subsidiary of AustraliaÆs Colonial First State- Global Assets Management (CFS-GAM) selected HiPortfolio/3 as its core portfolio administration platform.

In total, DSTi now counts 150 clients in 13 markets in the Asia-Pacific region which are serviced by an expanding number of staff that currently stands around 600.