Asset managers pursue more targeted product strategy to drive distribution

Investment managers are increasingly pursuing a more targeted ‘right product, right fit’ product strategy to increase distribution, a survey has found.

The survey of 300 global asset management firms found that asset managers are increasingly focussed on the quality and “accuracy” of their products, targeted distribution strategies, better data management and outsourcing.

The findings are published in a white paper, “The Next Chapter in Driving Growth in Asset Management 2024”, from US-based custody bank Northern Trust.

Fewer than half (46%) of respondents identified controlling costs as their top strategic priority in the next two years, while 72% chose enhancing quality and accuracy, improving the investor experience (70%), and expanding product set (60%) as their top concerns.

The results mark a shift from manager priorities in Northern Trust’s previous such survey in 2022, when just 45% of managers identified enhancing quality and accuracy as the top priority, behind efficiency and cost controls.

“Many of the challenges we’re seeing today come back to the same core issue: data,” says Clive Bellows, incoming president of Northern Trust for Emea.

“As a result, managers are looking to leverage new technology, and the survey found that many managers are looking to enhance their data management strategies by engaging their custodians for outsourced solutions.

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