BPI Odyssey Funds UITF

BPI Odyssey Funds UITF

Last March 30, 2011, Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) completed the acquisition of Odyssey Funds from ING Bank. As part of the acquisition, Odyssey Funds will now become part of the BPI Asset Management Group.

Before acquisition, these funds are record holders in the whole portfolio of Unit Investment Trust Fund (UITF) products offered by banks in terms of returns. They registered one of the highest yields as compared to others. However, availability back then is limited as it requires a huge amount of initial capital to be able to start investing in these funds. As far as I remember, they are requiring a minimum of Php 5 million back then. With BPI’s acquisition, these funds will be made affordable even to small time investors.

Currently, Odyssey Funds are not yet available in all BPI branches nationwide. They are only available to distribution agents such as Citibank and HSBC. However, instead of the lower initial capital, these agents require a much larger initial capital that may not be affordable for some investors. For Citibank, I have inquired that they are requiring a minimum initial investment of Php 100,000 for all peso-denominated Odyssey Funds and USD 2,000 for all dollar-denominated.

However, the long wait maybe over. I recently talked to a person from BPI Asset Management and Trust Group handling the Odyssey Funds and she said that they are targeting last week of August (which is next week) or first week of September as the official launching of the fund in all BPI branches. When launched, the following minimum initial investment, minimum additional investment, holding period, and entry fees will be implemented:

Minimum Initial Investment Requirement:

  • All peso-denominated Odyssey Funds have minimum initial investment requirement of P10,000
  • All dollar-denominated Odyssey Funds have minimum initial investment requirement of USD 1,000 EXCEPT
  • Odyssey Asia Pacific High Dividend Equity Fund which has an initial investment requirement of USD 5,000

Minimum Additional Investment Requirement:

  • All peso-denominated Odyssey Funds have minimum initial investment requirement of P5,000
  • All dollar-denominated Odyssey Funds have minimum initial investment requirement of USD 100 EXCEPT
  • Odyssey Asia Pacific High Dividend Equity Fund which has an initial investment requirement of USD 1,000

Minimum Holding Periods:

  • All Money Market and Fixed Income PESO-denomiated funds have minimum holding period of 5 days
  • All Balanced and Equity PESO-denominated funds have minimum holding period of 15 days
  • All USD-denomiated funds have minimum holding period of 20 days

Front-End Loads (Entry Fees)

  • All Money Market Funds have 0.25% entry fees
  • All Fixed Income (Bond) Funds have 1.00% entry fees
  • All Balanced and Equity Funds have 1.50% entry fees


– In the list above, Peso Cash Management Fund is a Money Market Fund. The next 4 are Bond Funds. The next two are Balanced Funds while the last three are Equity Funds. To know more the difference between these types of funds, you can read my article on mutual funds vs UITFs.

– Your investment is subject to a 1.00% early redemption fee if redeemed within the holding period stated above in days.

– Odyssey Funds Pros: Ability to be able to invest in a high yield investment with a minimum capital and with a minimum holding period as compared to other UITF products offered by banks.

– Odyssey Funds Cons: Each time an investor subscribes to a particular fund, his investment will be charged upfront with the entry fee as stipulated above per fund.

Moreover, the ideal level of income before redemption should be at least higher than our country’s inflation rate plus the entry fee. That’s how we should fight inflation which degrades the value of our money in terms of its purchasing power.

Below are the Year-to-Date (YTD) and annualized returns of Odyssey Funds:


From the table of returns above, the Odyssey Philippine High Conviction Equity Fund will surely be the top choice of investors looking for capital appreciation. I will update this article when Odyssey Funds will become available in all BPI branches nationwide. Hopefully, that would be next week. For sure, I will be one of their early investors. 🙂

UPDATE as of September 15, 2011: All Odyssey Funds are now available at all BPI branches nationwide! You can also invest through BPI Express Online!

UPDATE as of September 19, 2011: I opened a BPI Odyssey Philippine High Conviction Equity Fund last Friday, September 16, 2011. Since I placed it after their cut-off time which is 11:30am, the NAVPU used in buying my initial investment was for the next banking day which is Monday, September 19, 2011. The 1.5% entry fee will be deducted separately from your settlement account.

For example, if you decided to invest the P10,000 minimum initial investment, the whole P10,000 will be used in buying the NAVPU. The P150 entry fee will be deducted separately from your settlement account.

Tyrone is a passionate financial literacy advocate. He started this blog on November 2008 when he watched The Secret which talked about Law of Attraction because he wanted to become a millionaire and wanted to know how a millionaire acts. At the age of 26, he achieved his first million. To find out more about him, click here or follow him at Instagram

60 responses on “BPI Odyssey Funds UITF

  1. The entry fee is a major bummer for me. Isn’t it UITF get management fees instead of entry fees, and are already incorporated in the NAVPS? Will Odyssey Funds be also accessible via BPI’s internet banking?

    • The entry fee here is actually the management fees. I just termed it as ‘entry fee’ since it’s deductible upon entry to Odyssey Funds.

      For other UITFs, yes, it is already incorporated or imputed in the Net Asset Value Per Unit or NAVPU. However, for Odyssey Funds, it was ING Bank’s practice not to incorporate the management fees into the NAVPU and so BPI maintained it.

      Yes, Odyssey Funds will also be accessible via BPI’s internet banking.

    • Hi Scion, sorry for the confusion. The entry fees and the management fees are separate. Annual management fees are separate and it’s already imputed in the NAVPU where as entry fees are deductible everytime you’ll invest in the fund. The table above now reflects the true entry fees per fund.

  2. Wow tnx dito!

    Ask ko lang yung Odyssey Philippine High Conviction Equity Fund eh same lang din ba with Odyssey Tax-Exempt Philippine Equity Fund? Ala kasi nakalist sa uitf.com.ph under BPI na “Odyssey Philippine High Conviction Equity Fund”.

    PS: Nakita ko kayo sa CR kaso nahiya ako lumapit. Sikat na kasi kayo 😉

    • That’s different. Not all Odyssey funds are listed in uitf.com.ph. There are two other tax-exempt Odyssey Funds (3 all in all) but I did not include it in this list because participants in these funds should be institutions or corporations, and not applicable to individuals. These institutions need to have a valid Tax Exemption from BIR to participate in these funds.

      Oh just approach me if you see me if you have any questions. 🙂

    • The entry fees and the management fees are separate. I’m sorry for th confusion. Annual management fees are separate and it’s already imputed in the NAVPU. The table above now reflects the true entry fees per fund.

  3. Hi Tyrone!

    I’ve been waiting for BPI to start offering Odyssey funds online and in their branches. This is certainly good news. Thanks for sharing.

    Just a few additional comments regarding the Odyssey funds below.

    – Citiband and HSBC required higher minimum investments but their entry fees were much smaller! When I opened a High Conviction Fund with HSBC, the entry fee was only 1% while I believe for Citibank, they have a higher entry fee, maybe around 1.5% if I remember correctly, but lower initial investment requirement

    – Given the high entry fees, this actually makes the funds less attractive for me as well. But the purpose of these higher entry fees of course is to deter short-term investors from joining the fund which is a plus.

    – While the entry fees can be added to the management fees, I believe the fund charges a separate annual management fee which is reflected in the NAVPU already as the first commenter mentioned.
    you can check from their latest report below -> it clearly indicates that management fee is 2.5% per annum charged on a per quarter basis.

    Regardless, I can’t wait for BPI to start offering these funds through their online site! Like you said, these funds have been performing really well and it would be a great opportunity for everyone to be able to invest in these.

    • Hi Money Magnets,

      Thanks for your inputs. For Citibank, I am assured that their minimum initial investment capital is 100K and that their entry fees is 2.5%. I already talked to one of their personal bankers since I am really contemplating of opening an account with them. I was even granted a lower entry fee of 2%. But I think that was the lowest they can go.

      Yes, I agree with you that the entry fees deter short-term investors given the fact that the fund has minimum holding period of less than a month.

      For the management fees, I really have to clarify and ask that once again to BPI Asset Management handling the Odyssey Funds. But I think you’re right. That fee is imputed in the NAVPU and is separate from the entry fees.

    • The above table reflects the true entry fees. The annual management fees per fund are separate and it’s already imputed in the NAVPU. Sorry for the confusion.

  4. That only means that they’ve increased the entry fees since then. 🙁 I joined last year and it was just 1% with HSBC. And I believe the entry fee actually went to HSBC and not ING (I invested last year, just before BPI bought the funds) – i’m not sure about this though. That’s the reason why I think Citibank is able to give you a discount.

    good luck to us and our investments ^^
    keep writing Tyrone, I enjoy reading your posts.

  5. @money magnet.. Thanks for pointing that out..
    I only read “meaty” comments like yours…

    I thought the table posted was the sales load
    amft.. management fee pala yun =p

    On topic, I don’t believe a sales load is
    the best to deter short term investors.
    What they should do is lengthen the holding period
    and increase the early termination fee.

    Front End Sales load is the not the way to do it..
    It has always been for distribution costs(i.e. to
    pay agents)
    It made since ING didn’t have an extensive branch
    to sell their funds(Kung may branches nga sila)
    So they sell it thru Citi and HSBC..

    • Sorry for the confusion mxherr5. I already corrected it. The previous figures are indeed management fees which are deductible annually and are already imputed in the NAVPU. The figures in the table above reflect the true entry fees per fund now.

      As you can see, the entry fees in the Odyssey Funds depend on the type of the fund. Money market fund has 0.5%, bond funds have 1.5%, balanced funds have 2%, and equity funds have 2.5%.

      I hope this all clear things up.

  6. I’m very interested to invest to another trust fund and starting to look for a nice offer… Kaya lang hindi ko masyado maintindihan.. dapat yata i-explain sakin, hehe! Will just visit any branch anytime soon… thanks for the info! =)

    • Hi SJ,

      You can actually track the NAVPU of the Odyssey Funds in three ways:

      1. Go to BPI Express Online site -> on top go to Rates -> Investment Fund Daily Prices. Tha NAVPUs of all funds handled by BPI, including the Odyssey Funds, can be found there.

      2. If you’re a Bloomberg user, each Odyssey Fund is represented by a ticker symbol. You can check the ticker symbol of the fund. For example, for Odyssey High Conviction Equity Fund, it’s “INGPHCE”.

      Alternatively, if you’re a Blackberry user, you can install the Bloomberg mobile app and just enter the ticker symbol of the Odyssey fund and you can check the NAVPU anytime anywhere you go as long as there’s BIS (Blackberry Internet Signal) for your connection.

      3. Go to http://www.uitf.com.ph, particularly with BPI’s managed funds -> http://www.uitf.com.ph/toap/uitflist/uitflist.asp?BankCode=BPI

      However, sometimes the NAVPU are not updated regularly and the NAVPU of Odyssey High Conviction Equity Fund is not reflected here. I don’t know why. But this is a good resource to see the NAVPU movements of all UITFs handled by banks as it shows the history and a graph for it.

  7. Hi Mr Solee,

    I am not familiar with these types of investments, i actually just place all my excess funds sa BPI SDA. however I got curious with the Odyssey fund. Can you tell me approximately how much yung return, like in your example, if you place 10,000?


    • Hi Carmina,

      UITFs and Mutual Funds actually act the same. They are like our usual “paluwagans” in some way where each member contributes to the fund. The returns are NOT fixed and are subject to fluctuations depending on where the fund manager invested and what the economy dictates. Money market and bond funds are the most conservative, they can have a return from 7% to 11% per annum. Balanced funds can have 20% to 40% perhaps while the most aggressive and riskiest of all, the equity funds, have a return of 30% to sometimes 109% per annum.

      Again, these are not guaranteed returns. You may actually lose money depending on the performance of the fund. So to counteract this risk, you need to study where the fund manager invests, time the market by buying low and selling high, or do peso-cost averaging.

    • To know where your fund is being invested, you have to check the “monthly performance report of the fund” it is in pdf form. You’ll see percentages there. Check on the “Top Holdings”

  8. Hi Tyrone, I just wanna ask you a question about BPI Odyssey fund, it was mentioned above that the starting amount to invest is P10,000 and additional of P5000, and with the holding period of 20 days., Meaning once I invest P10k, I should have followed it with another P5k within 20 days ? Then continuously invest P5k monthly ?

    • Hi JM,

      You are not compelled to redeem the funds within 20 days. In addition, you are also not compelled to invest the minimum additional investment. It all depends to you. But perhaps the best thing to do is to buy low and sell high. The beauty of BPI Odyssey Funds is the convenience of investing online and the minimum holding period.

    • Hi JM, I have done my own research on the taxes imposed on UITFs. Based on the article provided by Punongbayan and Araullo, UITFs should not be subjected to 20% withholding tax upon redemption.

      It reads: “Thus, proceeding from the above discussion, it is maintained that there should be no need for separate tax to be imposed upon redemption of UITF participation since the proper taxes have already been collected through the final withholding tax system.”

      The individual taxes per investment of the fund has been subjected to final tax already so gains on UITFs should no longer be subject to tax when it is distributed to the investors.

    • If no one has yet asked Bpi about the 20% withholding tax for the gain with their uitf funds, then it is about time that anyone with a Bpi uitf fund take the initiative to inquire from Bpi.

      Apologies if it is already common knowledge today Jan. 19, 2013: that Bpi does not impose or collect for Bir the 20% tax on uitf fund gain, because the Bir does not enforce it: so it is not taxable I mean the gain from uitf funds.

      I am really new in these matters of investments.

      Marius de Jess

  9. Thanks Tyrone , Im still trying to learn and increase my financial literacy before investing as you suggested.

    Thank you for helping me get started to get out of the rat race.

  10. Hi Tyrone. Im reading all the Uitf that I can find online, and also what the banks offer., I just wanna ask, Whats the difference betweek the bpi odyssey fund and their regular uitf ? and also whats the difference of the odyssey fund compared to other banks uitf ? Payday is near, and I dont want to spend my money on liabilities. So i wanna get my facts straight before going to invest.

    • Hi JM. The difference between BPI Odyssey and their regular UITF is that the Odyssey Funds have a maximum holding period of only 20 days. For peso-denomiated funds, they only have maximum of 15 days holding period. For regular UITFs of BPI, they have 90 days holding period. In addition, if you would compare the yields of both Odyssey and regular UITF, you would notice that Odyssey has higher returns historically. However, Odyssey is the only UITF I know which have a front end fee which was explained in my article above. Their regular UITF has no front end fee.

      For the difference between BPI’s UITF and that of other banks’, the main difference I saw aside from yields of course is the fact that BPI allows investors to make additional investments online through their site BPI Express Online making it hassle free and convenient for investors. As far as I know, you can’t do this on other banks. You have to visit your branch of account to make additional investments.

    • Here is my two cents worth of knowledge.

      Bpi bought the Ing Bank the former owner/operator of the Odyssey funds: so Bpi continues with the Odyssey funds.

      Now, it seems that the Odyssey funds were doing all right, that is why one of the reasons namely Bpi bought the Ing Bank.

      It’s like this: you buy a business someone else was owning and operating, so you take over also everything that he is operating for better or for worse, but of course you have the idea that in the big picture it is for the better — or you can operate it better.

      Just my two cents.

      Marius de Jess

  11. Hi Tyrone , why is so many people against the idea of front end fee ? For the purpose of simplicity, Would you be so kind to explain to me or to us what is the front end fee ? If I initially invest 10k , how much would be the front end fee for that ? and If I keep on investing 5k monthly , will it be charged for a front end fee every time I put money for my investment ? Thank you very much.

    • Hi JM,

      Front end fees will be deducted upfront from your initial and additional investments. If you invest 10k, it would be deducted upfront 0.25% if it’s a money market fund, 1% if it’s a fixed income fund, and 1.5% if it’s a balanced or equity fund.

      Depending on what type of fund you invested, your 10K would just become 9,875 if it’s invested in a money market fund, 9,900 if it’s a fixed income fund, and 9,850 if it’s a balance or equity fund. Therefore, before BPI even invest your money into those funds, bawas na agad.

      Front end fees are considered as ‘front end loss’ on the part of the investor.

    • Thanks Tyrone, you are one experienced investor and a good dependable source of information and good advice how to make money from investments.

      I am still trying to get the big picture and also the details of all these bits and pieces of investments, i.e., making money by putting our money in the hands of other people who know how to make money with our money, yes of course first for themselves and second for us also.

      And why should they make money for us, why not just make money for themselves, period.

      Because they will end up with a dead business and also behind bars in due time, like the founder/owner/operator of the Legacy rural banks, etc., Celso de los Angeles.

      But this dude did make a lot of money, still his last days were sorry ones, and he died of throat cancer recently — therefore no more trouble for him for defrauding gullible depositors of his Legacy rural banks.

    • Is it necessary for them to charge the front end fee on every additional amount you put it? Nakastated ba yan sa policy ng investment plan?

  12. Good day Tyrone, its me again. Can I ask another question if you dont mind ? Im looking at the bpi website about the odyssey funds and I noticed that there are also trust /management fee. Is it deducted at the same time as the front end fees ? Or it will be deducted everytime you redeem your investment ? Thanks again for your kind reply.

    • Trust and management fees are IMPUTED to the Net Asset Value (NAV) per Unit of the fund. That means, you would not feel it because it’s being deducted to the fund as a whole. It won’t be deducted everytime you redeem your investment if that’s what you’re asking.

    • In the US a lot of mutual funds holders did not make money because the funds operators charged too much fees of all kinds, but I cannot understand why Americans are so stupid to buy those mutual funds notwithstanding that they were being shortchanged by excessive fees from the funds operators.

      In the case of our own Bpi, it seems that Bpi tends to charge in some funds more than other banks funds operators charge, because it believes that it is working harder and longer and it believes that it is giving its clients a more dependable product than other operators of funds.

      Now, it is an accepted fact that Bpi is a very careful institution which takes very seriously its reputation for being honest and effective, and most important, does not take risky actions at the expense of their clients’ money.

      And it has been around for 160 years.

    • The thing about direct stock market investing is you need to monitor it daily because you have specific stocks that you bought in your portfolio. For High Conviction, since this is a UITF handled by the trust department of a bank (in this case, BPI), there’s an expert fund manager who will do the investing for you. In short, you are investing “indirectly” in the stock market through High Conviction.

      In investing, the higher the risk, the higher the return. Stock market is riskier than UITFs so they can also yield higher earnings. However, if you don’t know the stocks you’re trading, you could be headed for a loss. In addition, direct stock market trading involves a higher capital as compared to UITFs such as the High Conviction.

  13. I’ve tried opening on a BPI branch, hindi pa pala gaano kabisado ng mga account officers kung paano mag-work ang Odessey line. I though, I’ll just pass the requirements on a preferred BPI branch as instructed online (since may nominated account naman ako) tapos yun ok na, ikaw na bahala mag-monitor at mag-place ng additional investment online. But it took the account officer almost 30 minutes searching the Internet and her references on how Odessey works and how it should be opened. I also observed na parang ‘allergic’ ang mga account officers ng BPI kapag sinabi mo sa kanila na mago-open ka ng investment account, kasi naka-tatlong pasa sila sa akin, pinababalik pa nga ako eh.

  14. hi tyrone i am an OFW, i am your avid follower of your blog and now i inspired to invest, even im not starting yet but i do researched about different paper investments and i attract my attention on this BPI odyssey high conviction equity fund i checked its performance from the past years its looking great and accessible also through the internet for every transaction good for me , so it is my choice, but i have some doubt, the performance of the fund will not be affected since it is newly acquired by BPI ? and the system of management of the fund is same as before?..thanks & happy new year!

    • Hi Renz, I am not very sure about this. From what I’ve heard, BPI retained the management when they acquired the wealth management of ING which previously handled all the Odyssey Funds.

  15. Hi Tyrone!

    Is it true that the initial amount needed for BPI Odyssey High Conviction Fund is 1M? Given that, does it follow that 10,000K (contrary to what is written in their FAQ page, 10K is the initial amount) is only applicable to those who have 1M worth of mutual funds and UITF?

    What are you suggestions if I am planning to invest my Php 10,000 to BPI OHC and this is my first time?

    • Hi Liz, the initial amount for BPI Odyssey High Conviction Fund is only 10K and not 1M. I think the 1M was before when the Odyssey Funds was still under management by ING. When it was bought by BPI, it was made available to mass investors at an affordable 10k initial investment.

      As for me, I think it’s not yet good to enter in equity funds generally nowadays because stock prices are still high. Wait for bad news that will send stock prices down and that’s when you should enter. Personally, I just redeemed all my units in Odyssey High Conviction Equity Fund that I invested last September 2011. Now is the right time to sell and not to buy. As long as there are issues in Europe, most especially Greek’s impending bankruptcy, chances are that one day, a sharp decline will be experienced by our stock market.

  16. Hi Tyrone, did you invest again in Odyssey High Equity? Plan to invest here also this quarter kaso napaisip ako sa post mo that you redeem your shares because of Europe-Greek issue.

    • As of now, not yet. Still waiting for a big correction. If you want to invest, you may do so. Just wait kahit maliit na correction lang especially sa mining stocks because that’s where majority of the Odyssey High Equity Fund is invested. Buy low and sell high kasi ako to maximize returns.

      But you can also implement yung cost averaging strategy. Just invest a fixed amount monthly and i-timing mo sa pagbagsak ng PHISIX.

  17. Hi,

    I am trying to invest into the odyssey fund. I have a BPI online account but when I subscribe to a fund, I was able to see only 4 funds, all UITF. I don’t see any Odyssey fund. I changed my risk profile and got a score of 155, which means I can invest to aggressive funds type. Still, I don’t see Odyssey funds. Did you have any experience about this? Could you please tell me other ways to invest in Odyssey funds?


  18. Hi Tyrone,

    May God bless you a thousandfold for sharing these informations.

    Just want to inquire if investing in Odyssey $ bond fund is ok at this of the year?

    I also tried the calculators for ALFM & Odyssey $ Fund, and found out that the Odyssey’s yield is definitely higher. Does it mean its more risky to invest in Odyssey?

    Thank you.

    • If you have excess idle money and you have good number of years ahead to live, then go ahead: because you will make money if you stick to your funds for at least three years time, even the risky ones as an aggressive investor.

  19. Hello, I have the same question – I am not much of a reader and I don’t read the news so I don’t know when the market would decline again. When is your projection for the Odyssey funds to go down so we can buy?

    Thank you!

    • Look up the web pages of the Bpi Asset Management operation. there is a lot of information there, more than in any web pages of other funds operators.

      Google, Bpi Asset Management.

      If you want to have all the funds in the Philippines, then look up this web page:


      Happy researching.

      If you are happy with my information, say a prayer for me, okay?

      Marius de Jess

  20. Hi Tyrone, Odyssey High Conviction fund has been going down the past week. Are you worried as well? Would love to know what your outlook is for this fund this 2013. Do you think it would be better to reinvest it somewhere else? Thanks so much!

    • Hi Ads,

      I went out of Odyssey High Conviction Philippine Equity Fund even before the bad news about Philex Mining’s tailings at their Padcal mine broke out. This has caused the NAVPU of the fund to fall dramatically last quarter of last year.

      I would suggest to reinvest it to Philippine Stock Index Fund. This is the index fund of the PSE. It’s also a product of BPI. It’s a mutual fund and not a UITF product having a 180 days holding period. The PSE is so bullish right now. It may be subject for market correction but with a long-term view, it is advisable especially if the Philippines gets its much awaited investment-grade credit rating which many analysts predict to happen this year 🙂

  21. I’m interested in this Odyseey fund but I don’t know a thing about investing in funds such as this. I read the article but I still don’t know how things work in investment funds.

    In simplest terms, if I invest my 500,000 pesos for 5 years, how much will be the profit or loss?

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