Aberdeen Asset Management plans to rebrand its newly acquired Indonesian fund house and add headcount after November, when it expects to assume full control and take up new digs.
NISP Asset Management’s head, Sigit Wiryadi, will remain in charge of the new business, which has 30 employees. Aberdeen did not respond by press time to queries about the planned headcount.
The deal, announced in February, was approved last week by Indonesia’s securities regulator (OJK). This followed the green light coming from the Monetary Authority of Singapore – this was required because the acquirer is Aberdeen's Asia subsidiary, which is based in the Lion City.
The purchase of 80% of the share capital of Jakarta-based NISP AM will give Aberdeen its first presence in Southeast Asia’s biggest economy.
After it takes over, Aberdeen will apply to the regulator to change NISP AM’s name to PT Aberdeen Asset Management before it also applies to change the names of the former’s funds.
The UK firm said it will work closely with NISP AM to introduce its global best practices in the shape of fund management processes, dealing, operations, compliance and risk management systems.
A number of other asset managers have also established a presence in Indonesia in recent years or are looking to do so.
The approach seemingly favoured by the OJK is for foreign firms to acquire existing licences of small-scale local managers with a view to achieving consolidation in what is a fragmented market.
In June, JP Morgan Asset Management said it was exploring options in the country. UK-based Ashmore bought an 85% share in Indonesian fund house Buana Megah Abadi and hired investment and sales staff early last year, as reported by AsianInvestor. And Eastspring Investments gained a local licence in early 2012 and soon afterwards put a 20-strong team on the ground.
Korean fund house Mirae Asset had originally sought to acquire 70% of NISP AM, but ultimately shelved its plans last year.
NISP AM was spun out of NISP Sekuritas in 2011, having operated as a fund manager since 2001. The fund house manages Rp3.5 trillion ($300 million) in mutual funds, protected funds and discretionary accounts.
Aberdeen has been investing in Indonesia since the 1980s and runs $2.8 billion in Indonesian equities. It was the first foreign asset manager to launch a dedicated Indonesian equity fund in Singapore, in 1997, which has now grown to S$180 million, as at the end of January.