Jupiter Fund CEO Says Firm Is Big Enough to Remain Independent

  • Slendebroek says Jupiter hasn’t been approached by competitor
  • Firm to pay for research in 2018 to comply with EU rules

British investment firm Jupiter Fund Management Plc is “happy” to remain independent and doesn’t need extra scale to manage regulatory costs and increasing competition from cheaper passive funds, according to Chief Executive Officer Maarten Slendebroek.

Jupiter announced Friday it will pay an extra 5 million pounds ($6.3 million) a year for research from 2018 to comply with new European rules that come into force in January, rather than charge clients. The cost is manageable, the CEO said.

“We are very happy for now with our independence, we don’t need that scale,” Slendebroek said in a phone interview. “What’s the industrial logic that I should be acquired by a larger international player that grows at lower margins? Lots of CEOs of mutual-fund companies continue to talk to each other but we have not been approached.”

The Jupiter chief said the company is big enough to withstand the challenges facing the asset-management industry and downplayed the threat posed by passive funds stealing market share. Clients are happy to keep paying for performance, he said. Others in the industry such as U.K. peer Henderson Group Plc and the U.S.’s Janus Capital Group Inc., have sought safety in merging to create bigger global firms.

“The passive institutional business is enormous,” Slendebroek said. “It just means that Jupiter needs to be the active component in a portfolio. We have lot of clients that allocate to passive. In addition to that, they have a risk budget allocated to other products and that is the area we play in.”

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