A year after going public, Artisan Partners Asset Management Inc. is on a roll that is enriching clients, stockholders, financial backers and employees.
Stock market gains combined with outperformance in most of its strategies have helped increase assets by 31% in the months since its March 7, 2013, initial public offering. Assets under management at the equity manager increased to $109.3 billion as of Feb. 28, up from $83.2 billion as of March 31, 2013.
Investors have pushed up the stock price and Artisan's founders, employees and financial backers are dividing up about $575 million following a new secondary market offering.
“Investor interest remains strong due to strong relative investment performance, organic growth and an attractive dividend yield,” said Christopher Shutler, an equity analyst with William Blair & Co. in Chicago. He said the dividend yield should equal roughly 5% of Artisan's stock price in 2014.
Artisan stock closed at $63.30 on March 28, more than double its IPO price a year ago. At that time, 11.1 million shares were sold at $30 a share.
A sold-out secondary offering on March 12 saw more than 9 million shares purchased at $62 each. Artisan employees were prohibited from selling more than 15% of shares they own, but that still provided about $86 million for the biggest sellers, Artisan founder Andrew Ziegler and his wife, Carlene, who sold 1.4 million shares.
Other big sellers were Mark Yockey, global equity portfolio manager, who received about $47 million, and Andrew Stephens, growth team portfolio manager, roughly $22 million.
Mr. Ziegler and his wife face a much bigger payday as soon as June 14, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings. That's when, without restrictions, they will be allowed to sell the almost 8.2 million shares of Artisan they still own. If the stock still fetches $62 a share, they would make $507 million, if they sold all the shares.
Private equity firm Hellman & Friedman LLC, San Francisco, is also a big winner. The firm netted about $310 million for selling 5.2 million shares in the secondary offering. Hellman & Friedman, which invested an undisclosed amount in Artisan in 2006, collected about $298 million in another secondary sale last October.
Mr. and Ms. Ziegler founded Artisan Partners, Milwaukee, in 1994 after both left Strong Capital Management in suburban Milwaukee, where Mr. Ziegler was president and Ms. Ziegler was a portfolio manager. Ms. Ziegler, Artisan's first portfolio manager, retired in 2008.
Mr. Ziegler stepped down as Artisan's CEO in January 2010, and Eric Colson, a former top executive at investment consultant Callan Associates, succeeded him. Mr. Ziegler remained executive chairman until the secondary sale this month. He is still chairman of the board of Artisan Partners Asset Management.