Independent Financial Markets Research Limited

IFMR is the fundamental research integration unit and majority owned operating subsidiary of Independent International Investment Research PLC. The company was established in 2002 in order to address the requirement, particularly in the US, for independent sources of equity research. The market for such research was considerably boosted in 2003 by the announcement of the Global Research Analyst Settlement in the US, which requires some broker-dealers to provide independent research to retail clients. Research coverage by a non-US based firm provides an essential counterpoint to US-originated research, since US-based research staff are inevitably influenced by the same political, cultural and social factors. The addition of a non-US firm in the broker-dealer's research mix allows it to maintain a balanced international perspective and a healthy diversity.

Moreover, the currency overlay expertise that we apply before making each stock recommendation ensures that the US$-based investor in overseas companies enjoys the benefit of maximum protection from currency fluctuations - which is essential in safeguarding portfolio value.

Research Integration

IFMR integrates research methodologies which are complementary to one another, in order to provide a robust, multi-layered assessment of each investment opportunity. The firm has established relationships with leading independent research originators to deliver reports which examine the fundamental, technical and currency risk elements of each investment decision. In 2005, we anticipate broadening the research base to include quantitative and statistical components.

Different to Research Aggregation

Whereas research aggregators assemble a selection of reports on a single company, IFMR provides a single report from carefully-selected sources to provide a considered, balanced view.

Total independence

IFMR and its suppliers have no investment banking activities or links, and do not engage in any proprietary trading in any of the companies covered, have no commission income, no soft dollar brokerage income. No research is sponsored, and no directorships are shared with covered companies. We believe that the firm is as independent as it is possible to be.

Standards and Compliance

IFMR provides these services for its sister company, Pronet Analytics.com Limited, to deliver to clients. Pronet Analytics falls under the jurisdiction of the Financial Services Authority in the UK, which has authorised the firm and by which it is regulated. The FSA Rulebook provides a comprehensive framework to control and monitor the conduct of the company (as well as a compensation scheme to protect private/retail UK clients). Under the FSA regime, Pronet makes monthly, quarterly, half-yearly and annual reports covering such matters as ethical conduct. Pronet is monitored (through regular site visits and audit) by an independent regulatory consultancy. Pronets technical analytical team have passed FSAs Registered Representative exams, and the senior executive officers have all been subject to FSA approval in their roles, which includes achieving an accepted standard of fitness and propriety. Neither Pronet staff nor staff of its suppliers may transact on their own behalf in any of the investment instruments for which the firm provides research coverage therefore there is no potential conflict of interest in this regard. Pronet is also registered as an investment advisor with the SEC.

Ratings

IFMR has adopted a simple and conventional approach to ratings. A company expected to improve by 10% over 6-24 months would be given a Buy rating. Conversely an expected deterioration by 10% leads to a Sell rating. The rating is determined by reference to both the fundamental view, and is then filtered to exclude companies where the technical condition conflicts with the fundamental view. Then, a third filter is applied with consideration of currency risk, so that the investor's anticipated return, in his or her local currency, can be given.

Time Frame

Typically we are considering a 6-24 month time frame in the written report. The report is updated quarterly, as well as in the event of any unexpected company or market event, or change in technical condition. We can also provide clients with access, online, to tactical updates (one-to-three months) and active updates (one to thirty days), if required, to further assist in maximising the returns on the client's portfolio.

Distribution

Our reports are available directly on the web, or via BNY Jaywalk inc. The shorter time frame components are available only on-line.

Pricing

Pricing depends upon the number of comanies for which you require coverage, and the size of the intended audience. As a guideline, a licence to distribute our coverage of 100 companies to 10,000 clients would be charged at US$10,000 per company.

New company initiation

Typically new companies can be added to coverage within two weeks.