Wealth in the UK: Competitive Dynamics 2016

Wealth in the UK: Competitive Dynamics 2016

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Executive Summary

Since the introduction of the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) in 2012, the UK wealth management competitive landscape has undergone a steady evolution. New business models have emerged as both new and established players seek ways to address the range of financial demands of retail, mass affluent, and cost-conscious high net worth (HNW) individuals. Several digital platforms have launched in the UK market in 2016, ranging from extensions of traditional wealth managers to robo-advisors. With the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) addressing issues of regulated technology and improved communication, initiatives will continue to develop going forward.

Key Findings

UK wealth manager activity is concentrated in London and South East England. This is unsurprising, as these regions are home to nearly a third of all UK-based HNW individuals.

The market leader in terms of assets under management (AUM) is St. Jamess Place, followed by Coutts and Barclays. The AUM of the top 20 UK wealth managers grew by over 8% year-on-year between 2014 and 2015.

The advice market continues to be a key focus for the FCA, which introduced a series of proposals in March 2016 to improve access. One such proposal centers around an 'Advice Unit to help grow the automated advice market in the UK by helping firms develop mass-market automated advice models.

Merger and acquisition (M&A) activity has largely been driven by established players wanting to capture greater market share or expand their client offerings. For example, Aegon acquiring Cofunds from Legal & General and Cazenove Capital Management acquiring the wealth management business of C. Hoare & Co.

To resonate with audiences who prefer digital-only solutions and simplified advice, the robo-advice market in the UK grew with new entrants Wealthify and Munnypot.


"Wealth in the UK: Competitive Dynamics 2016" analyzes the UK wealth management market, with a focus on the top 20 competitors and the HNW investor segment. The report is based on analysis using Verdict Financials 2016 Global Wealth Managers Survey and Verdict Financials UK Regional Wealth Markets Analytics.

Specifically the report includes:

An overview of the top wealth managers in the UK based on business model and minimum investment thresholds and ranking based on AUM.

Recent news related to regulations that pertain to wealth managers. This includes improved communication with consumers, investors with non-domiciled status, technology, and Brexits impact on regulation.

Insight into recent M&A activity, new entrants to the UK market, and divestment activity.

Product and service innovations, including automated services and personalized offerings.

Reasons To Buy

Identify the top 20 wealth managers in the UK by AUM and minimum investment thresholds.

Gain insight into M&A activity and organic growth for both new entrants and incumbents.

Understand changes made to UK regulations related to MiFID, consumer communication, and technology.

Learn about recent product and service innovations among traditional wealth managers.

Understand the growth within robo-advice services.

Read More

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Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications



Key findings

Critical success factors


UK wealth managers use a wide range of business models

Family offices and private banks keep investment thresholds high

Wealth managers are concentrated in London and the South East

The UK's top wealth managers continue to grow their books

Discretionary investment thresholds remain stable among the top 20


The advice market continues to be a focus of FCA regulation

The current landscape of the UK advice market is made more clear following the FCA's financial advice survey

FAMR has led to a number of proposals to improve access to advice

The FCA has also sought to improve consumer communication

Wealth managers now have more guidance on how to present information

The FCA focuses on regulatory technologies through Project Innovate

Despite Brexit, MiFID II remains on the horizon, but has been pushed back to 2018

The RDR has largely paved the way for MiFID II

The FCA continues to request stakeholder input regarding MiFID II

The permanent non-domiciled status will be terminated in 2017

Further amendments to non-domicile rules will have an impact on UK property

The FCA is increasing accountability in the financial services sector

Brexit will no doubt impact the UK financial market

Business conduct and culture are key issues in encouraging compliance

New rules on whistle blowing have been launched in 2016

Firms will have increased responsibility over their staff under the Senior Managers and Certification Regime

The largest fines in 2016 were imposed for misconduct in the wealth management and asset management markets

The FCA has published the final version of the UCITS Remuneration Code to impose new requirements for management companies and risk-taking.

Recruitment in wealth management is focused on regulation-related roles


M&A activity

The most notable M&A deal was Societe Generale's acquisition of Kleinwort Benson

The IFA market has witnessed a slowdown in M&A activity

Major players carry out divestment activity in 2016

Organic growth and restructures

Wealth managers strengthened their regional presence

Wealth manager restructuring in 2016 centered around maximizing efficiencies

New entrants comprised international firms and robo advisors

New entrants comprised UK operations by international firms

New robo-advice platforms also enter the UK wealth management space

Product and service innovation

Wealth managers respond to demand for online platforms with a personal touch

Traditional wealth managers look to robo-advice services

Some wealth managers have launched enhanced financial planning solutions

New services have been launched to target HNW and UHNW segments

Wealth managers in the UK target expat populations


Abbreviations and acronyms





Liquid assets

Mass affluent

Overall methodology

Verdict Financial's 2016 Global Wealth Managers Survey

Global Wealth Model methodology

PAM UK data


Further reading

About Verdict Financial


Table 1: The different types of UK onshore wealth management providers

Table 2: Competitors with the highest investment thresholds (for discretionary portfolios), 2015

Table 3: Liquid assets held and percentage of HNW clients' assets by region, 2015

Table 4: Top 20 UK wealth management firms by AUM (�m), 2014-15

Table 5: Minimum investment thresholds across the top 20 competitors

Table 6: Average investment threshold of the top 20 competitors, by business model

Table 7: Fines imposed by the FCA on wealth managers

Table 8: Wealth manager acquisitions, October 2015 - September 2016

Table 9: Succession Group has completed 10 acquisitions since October 2015

Table 10: Divestment activity, 2016

Table 11: UK wealth managers expanded their regional reach in 2016

Table 12: A number of companies launched in the UK in 2015 and 2016

Table 13: A number of robo-advice firms launched in the UK

Table 14: Wealth managers are targeting wealthy clients with new services

Figure 1: Different competitor models focus on different customer segments

Figure 2: The top 20 wealth managers by total AUM are concentrated in London and the South East

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1825, Aegon, AFH Financial Group, Antarius, Arbuthnot Latham, Ashton KJ Financial Planning, Aviva, AXA Wealth, Baigrie Davies, Barclays, Bellpenny, Bessemer Trust, Brewin Dolphin, Brown Shipley, C. Hoare & Co., Caledonia Financial Planning, Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management, Capital Generation Partners, Carson Associates, Cazenove Capital Management, Cenkos Securities Plc, Charles Stanley & Co, Clay Rogers, Coutts, Coverall Worldwide Ltd, Credit Suisse, CT Capital Ltd, Davy Private Clients, DBS, Edinburgh Investment Consultants, Edward Securities, Equilibrium Asset Management, eValue, Facts Financial, Fidelity, Firth & Scott, Goldman Sachs International, Hargreave Hale, Hargreaves Lansdown, Harwood Wealth Management, Hassium Asset Management, Hawksmoor, Holbein Partners, HSBC Private Bank, Intesa Sanpaolo, Investec Wealth & Investment, J. Stern & Co., JP Morgan Private Bank, Kleinwort Benson, Legal & General, Lewis Chambers, LGT, Lighthouse Group, Lloyds Bank Private Banking, MAN GLG, Maze Wealth, Michael Moore Life & Pensions, Millburn Insurance Company Limited, MoneyFarm, Munnypot, Munro Partnership, Netwealth, Newedge, Nutmeg, Oddo & Cie, Old Mutual Wealth, Partners Capital, Pearl Life Holdings, Phoenix Group Holdings, Pictet & Cie, PM+M, Precision Capital, Principals in Practice, Quick Purchase Ltd, Quilter Cheviot, Rathbones, Raymond James, RBS, Rothschild, Rowan Dartington, rplan, Sandaire Investment Office, Sanlam, Santander, Saunderson House Limited, Scalable Capital, Segetia Wealth Management, SEI Wealth Managers, Seven Investment Management, The Share Centre, Smith & Williamson Investment Management, Societe Generale, St. Jamess Place, Standard Life, Stanhope Capital, Stifel Nicolaus, Stonehage Fleming Investment Management, Succession Group, Threadneedle Asset Management Ltd, Tilney Bestinvest, TMS, Towergate Underwriting Group Ltd, Towry, UBS Wealth Management, Unigestion, Vestra Wealth, Vision Group, W H Ireland Limited, Walker Crips, Wealth Club, Wealthify, Wren Investment Office

asset management, automation, FCA, HNW, IFA, investment management, mass affluent, MiFID, private banking, RDR, UK, wealth management

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