Thursday, November 29, 2018 Stamford, CT USA — Asset managers looking to win retail investment assets must become more nimble and responsive to shifts in a global markets, according to banks, financial advisors, insurers and other companies that distribute retail investment funds across Europe and Asia.

Every year, Greenwich Associates interviews intermediary investment fund distributors around the world as part of its Intermediary Distribution Studies. These distributors had a clear message for asset managers in 2018: You will not be successful if you keep pushing the same suite of products year after year. To win assets on retail platforms, asset managers must adopt their offerings to changes in investment demand, while also providing the high-quality service and relationship management needed to help distributors and their retail clients navigate today’s rapidly changing markets. 

The 2018 Greenwich Quality Leaders in Intermediary Distribution in Europe and Asia demonstrate all of these qualities, complementing consistent investment performance with the product innovation, service quality, relationship management and cost structure that fund distributors now demand. 

2018 Greenwich Quality Leaders – Overall European and Asian Intermediary Distribution

Based on evaluations from fund distributors, Allianz Global Investors, AXA Investment Managers and Robeco jointly claim the title of 2018 Quality Leader in Europe.  In Asia, Allianz Global Investors and Alliance Bernstein are co-leaders. 

The Greenwich Quality Leaders and other asset managers that differentiate themselves in areas beyond pure investment performance are at a significant advantage to competitors when it comes to capturing assets on retail platforms. 

In Asia, retail fund distributors include an average 28 asset managers on their platforms, but actively market only 15. Across both regions, between 55% and 60% of distributors say the funds they actively market are hand-picked gatekeepers. 

These figures demonstrate the need for asset managers to develop strong ties with gatekeepers and other decision-makers at distribution platforms. “The way to do that is through product innovation that shows distributors the asset manager is attuned to the needs of the investors on their platforms, and through service and relationship management capabilities that minimize headaches and add value for distributors,” says Greenwich Associates Managing Director Markus Ohlig.