Under new legislation entering into force at the end of 2022, all unregulated independent Swiss asset managers will need to file their license application with FINMA by year end at the latest. Will this trigger the anticipated consolidation of the industry? We set out to answer this question on the basis of our market research combined with the findings of a survey of 83 IAMs.
Independent asset managers (IAMs) are what you may call the SMEs of the Swiss financial services industry. Often founded by successful former relationship managers at private banks, they operate an asset-light but high-margin business, primarily offering discretionary portfolio management to a longstanding clientele. The industry is granular, fragmented and relatively opaque. With the advent of a compulsory licensing, FINMA supervision and the prospect of tighter reporting requirements, however, the industry looks set to become more transparent.
The aim of our survey is to get a more accurate grassroots view of the industry’s concerns and how IAMs are planning to respond to the new legislation. Thus, we commissioned external agency Norstat to conduct a market survey of 83 “pure-play” independent asset managers from mid-May to mid-July 2022. The results are published in a new white paper: IAM Market Insights "Will the licensing requirement for independent assets managers by the end of 2022 trigger the anticipated consolidation of the industry?".
Our key conclusions based on our market research combined with the findings from of a survey of 83 IAMs.
The licensing requirement for Swiss independent asset managers as of the end of 2022 looks set to become a watershed moment. Strategically, on the one hand some IAMs have already decided not to apply for the licence and could consider disposing of their business. On the other hand, those who remain will be able to seize this opportunity if they wish to grow through acquisition, attract promising talent and/or reduce their costs through economies of scale. Whatever the case, there are interesting times ahead, with opportunities bound to emerge on both the buy and the sell side.
Feel free to check out the full whitepaper or contact us if you’d like to talk about the implications for you and your business.
Director, Deals Financial Services, PwC Switzerland
Tel: +41 58 792 14 00
Senior Associate, Deals Financial Services, PwC Switzerland
Tel: +41 58 792 14 72