Janus of Denver, Colo. is creating a new line of funds to expand its sales through plan sponsors, broker/dealer wrap programs and bank trust departments.

Janus has asked shareholders owning the retirement class of its Janus Aspen funds to approve the transfer of the funds to a new line known as the Janus Adviser Series, according to a preliminary proxy statement the Janus Aspen funds filed with the SEC April 5. The Janus Adviser funds will include a 0.25 percent 12b-1 fee to pay intermediaries who sell the funds. Janus' retail funds do not carry a 12b-1 fee.

The retirement shares of the Janus Aspen funds now are offered in non-taxable defined contribution plans and variable annuities, Janus said in the proxy statement. Janus is proposing to create the new line of funds to respond to demand from plan sponsors that their employees be able to invest taxable assets in the Aspen funds, Janus said in the proxy statement. Federal tax laws now prohibit the so-called commingling of taxable and non-taxable investments in the Aspen funds, according to the proxy statement.

Janus executives acknowledged that they have considered offering their no-load funds with a sales charge. While that move may come eventually, the proposed Janus Adviser funds do not represent Janus' decision to offer load funds, said Jane Ingalls, a spokesperson for Janus. Offering a load-fund lineup may come eventually, but Janus has no immediate plans to offer funds with a sales charge, Janus said in a statement.

"This is not a load fund family," Ingalls said of the Adviser funds.

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