Most European asset managers are allocating more resources to fund selectors, according to new research.
Cerulli Associates disclose this finding in “European Distribution Dynamics 2014: Responding to Change.” Based on 75 interviews with fund managers and distributors, as well as proprietary survey of 128 asset management firms, the report examines mutual fund distribution across eight markets in Europe.
The report indicates that 70 percent of asset managers are devoting more resources to find selectors. The percentage is significantly higher than other retail distribution initiatives identified by the asset managers.
For example, a bare majority of Cerulli’s survey respondents (50 percent) are dedicating more resources to relationships with discretionary fund managers (DFMs). A still smaller proportion (less than one-third) of respondents are committing resources to road shows for independent financial advisors, sales focusing on institutional investors and relationships with paraplanners.
Turning to the Swedish market, the report indicates that high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth investors constitute 38.6 percent of cross-border managers’ target prospects by client segment. Other targeted prospects — mass affluent, mass retail, defined contribution plans, insurance companies, among others — account for fewer than one in five target prospects, Cerulli reveals.
“The pressure on fees has made the mass retail fund market less attractive, but its size makes it difficult to ignore,” the report states. “Many clients belong to several segments, such as mass retail, defined contribution [plans] and so on — something to take seriously when considering customer service and communication.”