When UBS Asset Management won the title of Overall Fund Manager of the Year in 2003 in Money Management’s Fund Manager of the Year awards, former managing director, John Larum had said the Swiss group had shifted its focus from its wholesale background to the retail market over that year.
This meant it had seen UBS listed on more platforms, while more of its products were listed on platforms.
Today, current UBS Asset Management head of Australia and New Zealand and managing director, Bryce Doherty, said the firm had all of its contemporary products on every major platform in the country while half of that revenue for the firm came from retail investment.
“Today we split it between institutional and wholesale. When John was speaking back in 2002 or 2003 they would have called it retail and wholesale. It’s 50/50 from a revenue point of view,” Doherty said.
“Last year we were close to a billion in net flows from retail. We actually call it wholesale now. And the previous year we were $1.2 billion.”
But what is most noteworthy for Doherty, who has been at the firm for six years, were the myriad opportunities that the superannuation system offered to funds management professionals.
“We’ve obviously got a lot of fund managers in Australia competing for predominantly superannuation dollars, and I think the real beneficiary of that is the Australian consumer or customer because they get access to some of most competitive funds management fees anywhere in the world,” he said.
“[This is] predominantly in my view because of our large superannuation system over the last 30 years providing fantastic breeding ground for Australian fund managers to learn and perfect their craft of generating returns for their clients.”
Super, which became compulsory in 1992, attracted many offshore fund managers to Australia, including UBS Asset Management, which has been in Australia since 1985. The burgeoning $2.2 trillion would increasingly attract more fund managers and their money into the space, which would facilitate competition and competitive funds management fees, Doherty said.
Speaking about the awards, Doherty said it was an opportunity to celebrate those in the funds management industry who had achieved positive outcomes for clients.
“We’re very fortunate to work in an industry that is heavily supported by regulation and government policy. At the end of the day we are delivering outcomes for Australians so that they can have secure and dignified retirements,” he said.