Aberdeen Asset Management To Acquire Advance Emerging Capital

Global investment management group Aberdeen Asset Management has announced that an agreement has been reached with Advance Emerging Capital Ltd (“AEC”) whereby Aberdeen will acquire 100% ownership of AEC.

The acquisition will add expertise and opportunities for Aberdeen and its clients across the Asia Pacific region.

AEC is a London based specialist investment manager with nearly two decades of experience managing portfolios of primarily closed end, but also open end, fund-of-fund vehicles. As of 30 June 2015, the company managed £409 million across a range of investment funds. The two largest vehicles that the team manages are Advance Developing Markets Fund Limited and Advance Frontier Markets Fund Limited, both of which are closed end.

Following the transaction Aberdeen will manage 33 closed end funds with aggregate AuM of over £8.5 billion.

The AEC team includes four investment professionals with over 50 years of combined investment experience. They will be based in Aberdeen’s London office and will be part of the Group’s Alternatives business which is led by Andrew McCaffery.

This step will provide the opportunity to expand the offering globally, across a wider range of additional strategies within the fund of closed end funds sector, when combined with the broader Aberdeen Alternatives capability. The team will be independent of Aberdeen’s direct equity and fixed income teams. In line with Aberdeen’s fee policy, the AEC funds will not be double-charged on any Aberdeen funds held in the portfolios.

Martin Gilbert, chief executive at Aberdeen Asset Management, comments: “The acquisition of Advance Emerging Capital brings to Aberdeen a dedicated and highly experienced fund management team, expands further our closed end fund business and adds to the range of alternative investment capabilities we already offer. AEC investors will benefit from the management team being part of a larger, independent asset manager and the ability to draw on the Group’s established distribution and operational expertise in regard to closed end funds.”

Andrew Lister, Co-Chief Investment Officer, Advance Emerging Capital, comments: “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. We are therefore delighted to be joining them, where we will continue to implement our current strategy and process with significant additional support provided by Aberdeen’s Closed End Funds team and the operational infrastructure that comes with being part of a FTSE 100 company. 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.”

In addition to this transaction, Aberdeen has recently completed the acquisition of FLAG Capital Management, a diversified private markets manager, and the purchase of SVG Capital’s stake in the joint venture Aberdeen SVG Private Equity Managers. Furthermore, it has entered into an agreement to acquire Arden Asset Management LLC, a specialist hedge fund manager and adviser. All these transaction are part of Aberdeen’s strategy to strengthen its alternatives capabilities to meet growing demand from investors that are looking to diversify their portfolios.

The AEC transaction is subject to regulatory approval from the UK Financial Conduct Authority and has the support of the Boards of Directors of Advance Frontier Markets Fund and Advance Developing Markets Fund, to which AEC currently acts as Investment Manager. It is intended to complete the transaction during the fourth quarter of 2015.



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