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SJP’s adviser ranks grow as funds under management hit £83bn

Adviser numbers continue to rise at St James’s Place, as funds under management hit £83bn ($108.3bn, €92.9bn) and it revealed plans to launch a growth fund in another sign that it will take more than negative headlines to dent the firm’s market share.

SJP’s adviser ranks grow as funds under management hit £83bn

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In a week that has seen fresh criticism of SJP about its charges and advice model, the UK wealth manager expanded its business over the first half of the year, ending the period with £83bn FUM, up over 25% from £65.6bn in 2016.

New and existing clients entrusted SJP with some £6.9bn of new investments in the six months to 30 June 2017, of which it was able to retain £4.3bn in net inflows, a 40% increase from the year prior.

From this, the wealth manager was able to take in new business profits of £343m, compared with £228.9m in 2016.

Growth 

St James’s Place Partnership’s stable of advisers has expanded by 3.7% since the start of the year to 3,540.

In its latest trading update, SJP also announced it would be adding a strategic growth portfolio and global growth fund to its product line to aid its clients’ hunt for yield.

The firm’s underlying profit before shareholder tax grew from £73.8m to £106.3m.

“Scale and quality”

In his last formal chief executive statement before handing the reins to Andrew Croft at the end of the year, David Bellamy (pictured) reiterated that SJP has the “scale and quality” to survive a challenging political and macro-economic backdrop. 

He said: “Setting aside the political and macro-economic backdrop, the challenges and responsibilities that individuals face, when considering how to manage their wealth, remain. 

“The implications of sustained low interest rates, longer life expectancy, enhanced pension freedoms and greater emphasis on individual financial responsibility, highlight the continued need for and importance of sound, personal and trusted advice.

“The scale and quality of the company’s relationship based approach to wealth management, twinned with our distinct investment management proposition, continues to be well positioned to serve this market.”

On the back of its “strong business performance” and “confidence in the future”, Bellamy confirmed the interim dividend would see a 25% increase to 15.41p per share.

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