Yesterday Aberdeen Asset Management confirmed rumours it was in talks to buy Scottish Widows Investment Partnership (SWIP), a deal which would make it the largest listed fund management firm in Europe.
Fitch Ratings said in a note the move would be "transformational" for Aberdeen, rebalancing its assex mix away from a dependence on global, emerging market and Asian equities and bolstering its fixed income and UK equities offerings.
"This more balanced asset mix, coupled with more stable AUM from SWIP's exposure to in-house entities of its parent, Lloyds Banking Group, should ultimately translate into greater earnings stability," the ratings agency said.
Should the sale go ahead, the combined assets of the two firms would total around £350bn, according to Bloomberg, nearly doubling Aberdeen's current assets of £200bn.
The deal would push the firm to the brink of becoming one of the top 20 fund managers globally by AUM, but it would remain some way off the biggest players.
All of the top five global asset management houses have upwards of £1trn in AUM, more than triple the assets Aberdeen would manage following a SWIP acquisition.
Here we detail the ten largest asset managers in the world, according to P&I Research's latest figures, alongside their areas of expertise.
BlackRock is the largest fund manager in the world with AUM of £2.34trn ($3.8trn). Based in the US, the group was founded in 1988 and acquired Barclays Global Investors in 2009 in a transformational deal of its own.
As well as its range of mutual funds, the group is the world's largest provider of ETFs through its iShares platform. In the UK, the group is arguably best known for its £2bn UK Special Situations fund, managed by Richard Plackett.
Vanguard, with £1.37trn ($2.2trn) in AUM, focuses entirely on index funds and ETFs and has recently made a foray into the UK, bringing nine ETF products to the market. It is best known for its low cost pricing structures on such products: its S&P 500 ETF is priced at just 9bps.
3. State Street
State Street Corporation, the US-based custodian bank, owns the investment advisory and management firm State Street Global Advisors. The group has £1.29trn ($2.1trn) in AUM and has operated in the UK since 1972.
It offers a range of services, from global custody to fund administration, and has active equity and fixed income funds, currency management solutions and ETFs.
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