The 8 largest asset managers in South Africa vs the world

A new report published by risk management, insurance brokerage and advisory company, Willis Towers Watson, reveals the top 500 asset managers globally, including eight South African companies.

Total assets under management (AuM) of the world’s largest 500 managers grew to $81.2 trillion in 2016, representing a rise of 5.8% on the previous year, according to Willis Towers Watson’s Global 500 research.

The research, which takes into account data up to the end of 2016, found that AuM for North American managers increased by 7.7% over the period and now stand at $47.4 trillion, whilst assets managed by European managers, including the UK, increased by 2.8% to $25.8 trillion.

The 20 largest asset managers experienced a 6.7% increase in AuM, which now stands at $34.3 trillion, compared to $26.0 trillion 10 years ago and $20.5 trillion in 2008. The share of total assets managed by this group of 20 largest managers increased for the third year in a row, rising from 41.9% in 2015 to 42.3% by the end of 2016.

Despite this, the bottom 250 managers experienced a superior growth rate in assets managed, rising by 7.3% over the year.

As with previous years, equity and fixed income assets have continued to dominate, with a 78.7% share of total assets (44.3% equity, 34.4% fixed income), experiencing an increase of 3% combined during 2016.

Continuing from the strong growth they experienced in 2015, assets in alternatives saw a 5.1% increase by the end of 2016, closely followed by equities at 4.1%.

BlackRock retained its position at the top of the manager rankings for the eighth consecutive year, however further insight shows the main gainers, by rank, in the top 50 during the past five years include Dimensional Fund Advisors (up 31 positions, from 76 to 45), Affiliated Managers Group (up 20 positions, from 52 to 32), Nuveen (up 16 positions, from 36 to 20), New York Life Investments (up 15 positions, from 55 to 40) and Schroder Investment Management (up 15 positions, from 59 to 44).

 Top 10 asset managers

# Manager Market Total assets  (‘000)
1 BlackRock United States $5 147 852
2 Vanguard Group US $3 965 018
3 State Street Global US $2 468 456
4 Fidelity Investments US $2 130 798
5 Allianz Group Germany $1 971 211
6 J.P. Morgan Chase US $1 770 867
7 Bank of New York Mellon US $1 647 990
8 AXA Group France $1 505 537
9 Capital Group US $1 478 523
10 Goldman Sachs Group US $1 379 000

South Africa

The report found that South Africa’s asset managers have struggled in recent years, thanks mostly to the weakening local currency against the US dollar.

Annualised change in exchange rates (LC against US$) 31 December 2011 to 31 December 2016:

The report noted that increasing strength of the US dollar has generally had a dampening affect on the growth rate in assets recorded by asset managers in the survey. This is particularly evident in Australia, Canada, the Eurozone, Japan and emerging markets such as Brazil, India and South Africa.

Growth of AUM by country over 5 years Local currency (LC) and USD:

Top 8 asset managers in South Africa

# Manager Market Total assets (‘000)
124 Investec Asset Management South Africa $113 336
191 Sanlam South Africa $57 941
235 STANLIB South Africa $42 700
237 Coronation Fund Managers South Africa $42 255
276 Allan Gray Proprietary South Africa South Africa $33 237
281 Hyundai South Africa $32 031
470 ABSA Asset Management South Africa $9 079
488 Peregrine Holdings South Africa $8 518

Read: Top 10 stockbrokers in South Africa

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