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Wealth Manager: Jupiter’s private client head on the benefits of working alongside the fund team
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by James Phillipps on Mar 14, 2013 at 00:01
Jupiter may be one of the best known fund groups out there but in the private client world its presence has always been somewhat understated.
As a house, the firm arguably has as strong a brand recognition as any other in the industry, but it is Andrew Clark’s job to translate this to its private client and charities business, which he now heads.
‘One of the reasons I have come here is because there is a real commitment to growing the private client business. It has sat there for 25 years and we still have clients of that era,’ says Clark.
‘It has always been a little inward-focused, but there is evidence of commitment – reviewing the business, recruiting me and investing in terms of technology – and all of that is now being put into place. It leads us to the point where we can go out there and spread the word in all channels that have an interest in professional investment.’
Clark joined from Schroders in December and admits it was a timely move as Jupiter had already carried out extensive work around issues such as suitability and facilitating adviser charging, ahead of the retail distribution review (RDR). And, with what he describes as the ‘heavy lifting’ already done, he is confident the firm is well positioned to build out its proposition.
In all fairness, despite its low profile, the private client business has been steadily growing, with assets under management ticking up from £1 billion in 2009 to close to £2 billion currently. Clark says 30% of new monies come from referrals from existing clients and the firm also counts a number of Jupiter staff both past and present on its books.
He says the fact Jupiter staff entrust it with their money ‘validates the proposition’, but more than that, it is reflective of the firm’s broader collegiate culture.
‘It’s a great place to work, full of interesting people, and if you get too big you can lose that. The people side of things is important as it drives the business,’ he says.
‘On the private client side, we sit with the retail fund managers and it is hard to overestimate the value of sitting there and hearing their informal discussions. We are on the same floor with some of the best investment names in the country – and I have worked at Merrill Lynch and Schroders.
‘It stacks the odds in your favour if you have people of that calibre and you can feed off that.’