Brooks' assets up £300m as flows remain positive

Brooks' assets up £300m as flows remain positive

Brooks Macdonald has posted a £300m uptick in its funds under management between July and September, as net flows remained positive.

Rising from £16.5bn on June 30 to £16.8bn at the end of September, the uptick equated to an increase of 2.2 per cent across the quarter, after the firm’s FUM hit “record levels” in the previous financial year, 2020-21.

The positive investment flows marked a continued recovery from what was a rocky financial year to June 2020 when investors pulled £774m from the funds.

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In the past quarter, Brook’s UKIM discretionary business posted fund flows of £200m, translating to an annualised rate of 5.7 per cent.

Funds rose from £11.8bn to £12.2bn, thanks to a mixture of organic net new business (£168m) and investment performance (£183m).

Flows to the UKIM Funds business meanwhile “were slightly negative”, the firm said, with its FUM remaining at the £1.6bn level.

It blamed its Defensive Capital Fund, which has continued to be affected by outflows in the absolute return sector.

The investment manager also recorded a “sharp reduction” in net outflows from its international business during the quarter. It added that a return to positive net flows by Q2 was “expected” for this business.

Andrew Shepherd, Brooks’ chief executive, said: "We have made a solid start to the financial year [...] and we have continued to provide benchmark-beating investment performance for clients.

“There is a clear energy about the business, helped by the passion and excitement our team gets from increasingly meeting face-to-face with advisers and clients again. We have a strong pipeline and we are confident of further improvement in net flows over the course of the year."

Last month, Shepherd told FTAdviser there was a “turning point in the actual numbers” in the first half of this year, but that numbers alone probably don’t tell the true story.

"It's been a number of years of hard work of putting in place the necessary foundations for us to grow, putting in place the right product set, building the culture of the business and the right people to be able to deliver.”

Last September, Brooks Macdonald pledged to transform the adviser experience in the next stage of its strategy as it looked to upgrade its digital offering.

In June last year, Brooks also set out to take over Lloyds Bank International’s offshore wealth management and funds businesses for the best part of £10m, while entering a referral agreement with Lloyds.

On future acquisitions, Shepherd told FTAdviser last month the firm did not have a number of prospective firms in place, but said the plan was based upon “organic growth”.

“If the right fit turns up in terms of an acquisition, then we'll add it into the plan, but it's really dependent upon the right fit, turning up at the right time.”