21 January 2011

Don't be hoodwinked by 'Celebrity Ambassadors'

News that former Grand Prix racing driver Niki Lauda has signed on as 'ambassador' for the Money Service Group is another example that investors are given the 'hard sell' by providers of money management services. Money Service Group has given itself an English name but is primarily active in Germany and Switzerland. One wonders what added value a racing driver brings to the party except that maybe some gullible potential or existing investors think that their fee money is well spent and that their investment performance (after deduction of fees of course) will benefit from his investment skills. After all, Lauda received 1.2 million Euro per year from Oerlikon, a previous sponsor who paid for him to wear its name on his head on all public appearances. Potential investors may have a look at the performance of 'Superfund' as Niki Lauda was previously lending his persona to this Hedge Fund provider. That even well-established large Investment Fund groups are not shy when using the popularity of sports personalities has been demonstrated by the use of other sports celebrities such as German football players that lend their image to Banks and Mutual Fund groups.