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A founding father of the Canadian mutual fund industry passed away today.

Warren Goldring, co-founder of AGF Management Ltd., has died at age 81. He and business partner Allan Manford launched the first U.S. equity mutual fund in 1957 for Canadian investors called American Growth Fund. Hence, AGF became the name of the firm - now the 9th-largest fund company in Canada with $18-billion in assets. Condolences go the Goldring family at this sad time.

Mr. Goldring's death, meanwhile, raises some questions about whether AGF , which is controlled by his family and has remained independent in the face of major industry consolidation, will be sold.

But Dundee Securities analyst John Aiken doesn't anticipate any change in control in the near term.

"While some modest restructuring may occur, we do not believe that a wholesale change is in the offing, nor will it likely be directly related to the passing of Mr. Goldring," he said in a note to clients.

"Control will still reside with the family, which is firmly entrenched in management of the company. Should a decision be made to divest, we believe that it will be made several years from now."