Aberdeen makes latest acquisition focused on alternatives

AquisitionAberdeen Asset Management is expanding its closed-end fund business with the acquisition of Advance Emerging Capital (AEC), a London-based specialist investment manager, for an undisclosed sum.

AEC manages fund-of-fund vehicles and had £409 million (€557 million) of assets under management at the end of June, primarily in closed-end funds.

The acquisition is also a way for Aberdeen to expand its alternatives offering as the AEC team will become part of Aberdeen’s alternatives business, which is led by Andrew McCaffery. McCaffery recently headed the launch of Aberdeen’s liquid alternatives portfolio.

Following the AEC transaction Aberdeen will manage 33 closed-end funds with aggregate assets under management of over £8.5 billion.

The team will be independent of Aberdeen’s direct equity and fixed income teams.

Andrew Lister, co-chief investment officer at AEC, says: “Aberdeen is an investment house we have immense respect for, and with which we share a similar investment philosophy and appreciation of the benefits of the closed-end fund structure.

“Sitting within Aberdeen’s rapidly growing alternatives business will, we believe, enable us to share ideas and best practice to the benefit of our existing investors.”

Aberdeen has been on the acquisition path recently to build its alternatives business. It recently completed the acquisition of Flag Capital Management, a diversified private markets manager, and the purchase of SVG Capital’s stake in a joint venture, Aberdeen SVG Private Equity Managers. It has also entered into an agreement to acquire Arden Asset Management, a specialist hedge fund manager and adviser.

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