Alan Brown, executive vice president and co-head of Nuveen Investments Global Private-Client Group, has been with the Chicago-based firm since 2001. Before this, he served as Amazon.com’s chief marketing officer.
Nuveen’s Advisor OutreachThe Wealth Management Services Group offers financial advisors a variety of education and consulting services/programs, based on these four broad themes:o Family wealth issueso Wealth planningo Investment consultingo Advisor practice development
Nuveen’s total AUM is $164.3 billion today, with $37.9 billion in pure institutional assets, $74.1 billion in Global Private Client assets (comprised of $19.2 billion in mutual funds and $54.9 billion in managed accounts), and $52.3 billion in the Global Structured Products group.
Brown spoke recently with Research about Nuveen’s growth strategies and advisor relations.
How is your business holding up, given challenges related to the auction-rate preferred securities issued by some of Nuveen’s closed-end funds, as well as broader market issues? Fortunately, our mutual fund business has not been adversely affected by the auction-rate preferred securities, or ARPs, issues. Overall, our mutual fund business is actually doing quite well. In the last four years, we’ve only had two negative months of flows. We’ve historically been very strong in separately managed accounts, and have $55 billion in assets under management in SMAs.
How do you view your relationship with the financial-advisor community?We have a very strong relationship with advisors who look to us for our consultative approach to portfolio construction for their clients. Our goal in putting more emphasis on the mutual-fund business has been to replicate that experience and to go back to advisors who have been strong supporters of our consultative approach.
Our premise has been: if you like our long-term growth, long-term value, international or other offerings in the SMA format, there would be instances where you would want to access that expertise using a mutual fund.
We embarked on this program about three years ago and have seen 50 percent growth in the past three years, from 2004 to 2007 — from $12 billion in AUM to more than $19 billion, and from 39 funds to 61.
What guided this growth strategy?Our real goal in getting started was to be sure we had really good offerings across the spectrum of asset classes to allow advisors to build well-constructed portfolios.
We have not had to rely on that one “hero” fund or a “star” growth or value mutual fund. We’ve seen assets flow into our value, growth, international, taxable, fixed-income and municipal offerings. Like a well-constructed portfolio, this approach has really smoothed out the bumps and bruises that the market can give you.