Morgan Stanley Investment Management has secured regulatory approval to take a full controlling stake in Morgan Stanley Huaxin Funds, its mutual fund venture in China.

The approval granted by the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) enables the US-based investment management and financial services company to increase its stake from 49% to 100% in Morgan Stanley Huaxin Funds.

The equity step-up is conditional to business registration requirements and other formalities mandated by Chinese regulatory bodies.

Morgan Stanley Huaxin Funds was established by Morgan Stanley as a joint venture (JV) in 2008 with Chinese brokerage Huaxin Securities.

It offers investment management services to institutional and retail customers through mutual funds and segregated management accounts. These include quantitative equity, fixed income, active equity, and multi-asset investment.

Through full ownership of Morgan Stanley Huaxin Funds, the investment banking company expects to expand its footprint in China.

Morgan Stanley Investment Management head Dan Simkowitz said: “Wholly-owning our China mutual funds business will allow us to more fully serve this dynamic asset and wealth management market and adds a significant pillar of growth to our global investment management franchise.

“As we further invest in our onshore platform, we will bring over our four decades of industry experience and global research expertise in sustainability and diversified portfolio management to help domestic clients achieve their investment goals.”

In March 2020, Morgan Stanley received approval from the Chinese regulatory body to take a majority stake in Morgan Stanley Huaxin Securities, increasing its stake from 49% to 51%.

Earlier in June 2022, the US company’s subsidiary Morgan Stanley at Work, agreed to acquire American Financial Systems (AFS), a non-qualified deferred compensation plan provider, for an undisclosed price.