Ashmore Group is planning to extend its range of alternatives funds with Latin America, Middle East and Asia products, the firm said today in its half-year results to the end of December.
The emerging markets specialist firm is also looking to boost its assets under management in its equities arm from the current level of 6% following the appointments of several senior London-based investment professionals in 2017.
Ashmore's intermediary retail AUM increased by 20% to $8.1bn in the second half of 2017 largely due to net inflows of $1.1bn - the equivalent to the total retail net flows seen in the whole of 2016. Retail investors currently make up 12% of the group's client base with the remainder institutional investors and segregated mandates.
Overall AUM increased 18% to $69.5bn in H2 2017, with net inflows of $7.9bn and positive market performance of $3.2bn. Over one year, 82% of AUM outperformed their benchmarks.
Operating revenues increased over the six months with net management fees +5% and performance fees of £14.8m. However this was offset by lower level of seed capital gains, which fell from £25.8m in H1 to £10.5m in H2, and currency movements, with a mark-to-market FX translation loss of £2.3m compared to a gain of £8.4m in the first half.
The adjusted EBITDA was £91.2m with the margin increasing from 66% to 67%. Statutory profit before tax was £99m and with a diluted EPS of 11.3p and an interim dividend per share of 4.55p.
The group confirmed that it would be bearing the cost of third-party investment research to comply with the new MiFID rules that kicked in at the start of the year, which it did not expect to have a material impact on operating costs thanks to its in-house capabilities.
Mark Coombs, chief executive officer, Ashmore Group, said: "The favourable environment for emerging markets is reflected in Ashmore's solid operating performance during the period, with 18% growth in assets under management, strong investment performance for clients, and increased profitability.
"We expect another good year of performance across the range of emerging markets asset classes in 2018, as economic conditions continue to be supportive, valuations remain attractive, and therefore investors continue to increase allocations."