<!-- Swiftype Variables -->

Money Management

Hermes Investment Management sets ambitious targets for Asian business

Hermes Investment Management, a London-based money manager with roughly $50 billion in assets under management, is targeting ambitious growth in the Asia-Pacific region over the coming five years, according to a senior executive.

Harriet Steel, Hermes' global head of business development, said at a lunch gathering with reporters in Singapore on Thursday that her firm is looking to boost its business on behalf of Asian clients over that span to 20% of Hermes' total AUM from roughly 5% at present.

Hermes sees that goal as "a realistic target," even though achieving it would require the firm's book of business in Asia to grow sixfold to eightfold when factoring in anticipated growth for the broader portfolio over the next five years, she said.

The firm will pursue an "organic, incremental strategy" — offering its active capabilities in key markets including South Korea, Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong, said Ms. Steel.

In markets such as South Korea, with sizable, fast-growing pension pools globalizing their portfolios and diversifying into alternatives, Hermes sees attractive opportunities for its private markets and real assets capabilities, she said.

In addition to that institutional channel, the firm's strength in environmental, social and governance oversight can offer opportunities in the financial intermediary channel in markets such as Singapore and Hong Kong, she said.

At the same time, Hermes won't rule out acquiring attractive investment teams in the region capable of enhancing the firm's capabilities, she said.

In April, Hermes' owner, BT Pension Scheme, the 49.3 billion ($65.4 billion) London-based pension fund of telecommunications company BT Group PLC, agreed to sell a 60% stake in the money manager to Federated Investors (FII) for 246 million.