Asset Management

Credit Suisse, ICBC Joint Venture Among Chinese Asset Management Stars

Tom Burroughes Group Editor 10 December 2019


The report sheds light on how effective non-domestic firms have been in marrying up with local Chinese institutions.

ICBC Credit Suisse Asset Management, the joint venture between Credit Suisse and China’s ICBC, is among three top Sino-foreign JV fund brands, according to a ranking by fintech group Broadridge

The other two such JVs in Broadridge’s China Retail Brand Ranking are CCB Principal Asset Management, and Harvest Fund Management, it said yesterday. 

Almost 30 medium- and large-sized domestic fund managers are rated based on Broadridge’s bi-annual retail investor survey, in which 3,000 Chinese investors across four “Tier 1” cities - Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen - comprising gender, age, and wealth groups, were asked to rank their top-three mutual fund brands.

The report sheds light on how effective non-domestic firms have been in marrying up with local Chinese institutions, tapping into a new regulatory landscape designed to attract capital inflows to China. The China Securities Regulatory Commission recently announced that it would completely lift the foreign ownership limit for fund management firms starting from 1 April 2020. More global firms are expected to take a majority stake in their Chinese JVs or even establish 100 per cent-owned retail fund businesses in China.

The authors of the survey said that Sino-foreign JV fund firms “generally enjoy good brand recognition among Chinese retail investors”. In fact, the JV brands tend to reflect the influence and relevance of their respective Chinese parents, and those with a Chinese bank parent are usually ranked high. 

Among the fund managers on the top-15 list, China International Fund Management (CIFM) stands out as a JV that has benefited more from its foreign than local parent, namely JP Morgan, which is a highly regarded brand in China. 

Way to go
Broadridge said that JV firms still have a long way to go to catch up with top domestic fund companies, as five out of the top six mutual fund brands are pure-play Chinese managers, with Tianhong leading the way, thanks to the popularity of its Yu’E Bao fund. The only exception is China Asset Management but it is hardly considered a Sino-foreign JV in China, as the firm’s foreign parents play a minor role as financial investors.

The bi-annual survey also reveals in detail the preferences of Chinese retail investors for fund and other financial products, investment allocation, investment decision-making, purchasing channels, as well as fund company brands and other factors.

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