1.1 Definition and presentation
Asset Management is a business practice seeking to maximize the value of a portfolio of assets. Asset Managers can be divided into three broad segments: individual asset managers, banks, and insurance companies.
The U.K. market share remains prevalent in Europe despite uncertainty caused by Brexit; as of 2017, it held 37% of AuM in Europe, followed by France (17%), and Germany (9%). The market leading position pertains to London’s role as a financial hub together with the size of the British economy.
Fragmentation of the U.K market is large, however the distribution of wealth remains highly concentrated. For example, Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM), Insight Investment and BlackRock owned 72% of the value of Pension Funds in 2018. Institutional clients remain the largest client group accounting for 80% of assets under management [IMS].
Business models such as Robo Advice are causing disruption to the industry; in particular, low-cost index funds are gaining market share. Exchange-Traded-Fund (ETF), introduced by Vanguard have seen a 21x increase in value from £11 billion at the end of 2008 [IMS]. The introduction of cheaper alternatives enabled through technology, together with increased regulatory pressure, will challenge the traditional business models of asset managers.
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