Australia's fastest growing investment managers

A Chicago fund manager tops the list of the 50 fastest-growing investment managers that raise assets from Aussie investors, according to Rainmaker Research.

William Blair, whose Sydney office is led by Alexander Rolfe, swelled its FUM from just $7 million five years ago to $270 million at September end. This implies an average growth rate of 110%.

Next on the list is Sydney small caps boutique Lennox Capital Partners, which was started by former Macquarie investors Liam Donohue and James Dougherty. Its fund is distributed by Challenger's Fidante Partners business and had $660 million at September end, growing considerably from $ 95 million about a year ago.

JP Morgan Asset Management Australia caps off the top three, with about $12.5 billion in assets at September end, which is more than $10 billion higher than the year before.

"It is smaller more niche investment managers that are growing fast. Among the 10 fastest growers in percentage terms, only one was mid size and that was a currency manager. All the others leading the growth race were small boutiques," Rainmaker executive director of research Alex Dunnin said.

Bringing up the rear of the top ten fastest-growing managers is: State Street Global Markets (135% growth in the year to September), Flinders Investment Partners (120% growth), Perth Mint (98% growth), VanEck Australia (64% growth), EQT Funds Management (59% growth), Aquasia (57%) and ETF Securities (55%).

BetaShares has an annual growth rate of 41% over a three-year period.

Widening the lens to five-year investment growth, some established names emerge as the winner.

Selector Funds Management (70% annual average growth), Legg Mason Asset Management Australia (64%), Plato Investment Management (40%) and Pinnacle (30%).

Dunnin said while boutiques are doing good in percentage terms, in raw FUM growth terms, the large managers are the ones attracting most of the new flows.

"This should result in investment manager market concentration increase in coming years especially given the weight of inflows due growth in superannuation arising from population and workforce increases," Dunnin said.

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