Nikko Asset Management is searching for a new senior sales manager after incumbent, Michael Robson, resigned last week.
It is understood, Robson, will take up a similar position with rival firm Milford Asset Management.
He has spent just over four years at Nikko in business development roles – the last two in a senior position with a focus on servicing financial advisory firms.
Prior to joining Nikko, Robson worked at ASB Securities for almost eight years as an equity dealer and wholesale equities broker.
Both Nikko and Milford currently have more than $5 billion in funds under management (FUM) with the later strong in the retail market and the former primarily a wholesale firm.
However, Nikko has had strong growth in the retail world in the last few years, breaking through the $1 billion mark in 2016.
Milford, meanwhile, has garnered most of its FUM direct from retail investors with limited support from financial advisers.
Also last week, Auckland-based boutique investment and advisory business, JMIS dropped a letter and added a word in an effort to reposition its retail brand.
JMIS – which began operating as an institutional and high-net worth advisory firm in 2005 – adopted the more explanatory name of JMI Wealth.
According to JMI Wealth director, Andrew Kelleher, the JMIS name, while well-known in institutional circles, was a hard-sell to retail clients.
“The feedback we had was that JMIS didn’t tell people what we do,” Kelleher said. “Now it’s clearer that we’re a wealth management business. It also reflects the fact that we’re now a much bigger business.”
JMI Wealth now manages over $2 billion across its three business strands covering financial advice, a discretionary investment management service (DIMS) and a retail funds range.
The firm expanded significantly in 2015 when it bought the-then $600 million plus Select Wealth Management DIMS offering from ASB-owned insurance arm, Sovereign. Last year the company also retooled its $275 million retail funds business – JMIS Investment Management – under the Clarity Funds Management label.
As at April this year the range of six Clarity funds reported a collective $326 million plus under management with the Australasian equities ($137 million) and NZ fixed income ($110 million) vehicles accounting for the bulk.
“We’ve seen encouraging growth across all parts of the business,” Kelleher said.
JMI Wealth is a subsidiary of Investment Services Group, which also includes Devon Funds Management in its stable of assets. Devon founder, Paul Glass, owns almost half of Investment Services group via the Investment Hub Trustees vehicle.
However, the company has a longer history dating back to Auckland brokerage firm Jarden Morgan Investment Services, which lent its initials to JMIS.
“For over 30 years we’ve quietly helped grow generational wealth for a range of clients through responsible stewardship, careful and conservative management and high-quality service,” Kelleher said in a statement.