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MONEY MANAGEMENT

Nikko Asset Management takes 15% stake in ETF boutique ARK Investment Management

Takumi Shibata, Nikko Asset Management
Nikko Asset Management Co. President and CEO Takumi Shibata

Nikko Asset Management is taking a roughly 15% stake in ARK Investment Management, the disruptive innovation-focused, New York-based exchange-traded fund boutique the Japanese firm partnered with late last year to launch a fintech equity fund.

A spokesman for Nikko said terms of the deal aren’t being disclosed. ARK CEO Catherine D. Wood couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

A Nikko news release Friday said the firm’s partnership with ARK gives it exclusive rights to offer ARK products and investment strategies in Japan and the broader Asia-Pacific region.

Just more than a year ago, ARK announced that American Beacon Advisors had acquired a minority stake. ARK’s most recent ADV filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, dated March 31, showed American Beacon holding a stake in Ark of between 10% and 25%.

The ADV filing pegged Ms. Wood’s stake in the firm at between 50% and 75%. Nikko’s news release said following its investment in ARK, Ms. Wood continues to hold a majority stake in the firm.

The Nikko news release said the Global Fintech Equity Fund it launched in December with ARK as a subadviser had total assets of 75 billion ($678 million) as of the end of July, almost 80% above the $382 million in firmwide AUM that ARK’s latest ADV filing reported as of March 31.

A Nikko spokesman said inflows to the firm’s fintech fund have been particularly strong over the past three to four months.

The Nikko spokesman predicted his firm’s tie-up with ARK would benefit both its institutional and its retail businesses.

Nikko had about $183 billion in assets under management as of March 31.