Abrdn reports revenue growth in 2021 for first time since Standard Life merger

Abrdn chief executive Stephen Bird said 2021 was a “reset year” for the company after it reported an increase in fee revenue of 6% to £1.515 billion.

The UK-based investment firm’s full-year results show a boost in this area for the first time since it merged with Standard Life in 2017.

The company also reported a 47% jump in operating profit – from £219 million to £323 million – while pre-tax profit rose 33% to £1.1 billion.

Performance was helped by Abrdn’s net outflows position in investments which – excluding liquidity and funds relating to Lloyds Banking Group – improved to £7.6 billion from £15.8 billion.

Assets under management increased by 1% to £542 billion, which the company said reflects positive market movements, along with the impact of corporate actions and net flows.

Bird said: “This was our reset year. In 2021 we set out a clear strategy for how we will create long-term sustainable growth and arrest the decline in revenue.

“Today, I am very pleased to report strong progress for this first year of our three-year plan – we are delivering on our strategy for growth.”

Bird added that an improved working relationship with its largest client, insurance specialists Phoenix, was key to the upturn, along with a rebrand of Abrdn into a “unified global identity”.

He said: “We have divested non-core assets and built out our capabilities across our three vectors, including in private markets and digital content.

“More broadly, we have sharpened the focus of our investments business to identify the key areas where we have a true competitive advantage.”

The results do not include Abrdn’s £1.5 billion acquisition of online retail investment platform Interactive Investor, as that deal was done later in the financial year.

Bird added: “It will diversify group revenues and significantly expand our client reach. This acquisition is expected to be double-digit earnings accretive in the first full financial year following completion.”

© 2022 funds europe

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