The Middle East’s Top Investment and Asset Management Companies
The Gulf Cooperation Council countries’ financial industry sectors underwent a tremendous shift since the early 1990s. In 2003, Saudi Arabia created the Capital Markets Authority, which has contributed to the growth of the district’s speculative banking and resource management companies. The elite administrative systems of the United Arab Emirates and Qatar have formed monetary zones. These initiatives created a solid foundation for the capital markets. With Saudi Aramco’s world-record-breaking first public offering, Middle Eastern financial markets were also bolstered.
Asset Management Companies (AMCs) are the key resource for individual financial supporters when it comes to their assets. Clients’ capital is invested in a variety of resources, including public companies, government bonds, property, and secret value. They maximize the value of their customers’ money by making the most of their expertise. They also provide venture banking and other consulting services to their customers.
Dubai has superseded Abu Dhabi as the most important financial center in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia region. This is according to the Global Financial Centres Index (GFCI). The expansion of financial services in the United Arab Emirates has spurred this boom. To service thousands of consumers throughout the Middle East and the United Arab Emirates, several investment funds have opened businesses in the United Arab Emirates.
Let’s take a look at some of the best-performing fund investing organizations.
SNB Capital is one of the prominent names in the Middle East with over $67 billion in assets under administration. Earlier in 2021, National Commercial Bank (NCB) and Samba Financial Group merged to form Saudi National Bank. The merger of NCB Capital and Samba Capital under the new name SNB Capital followed after. Earlier, National Commercial Bank formed NCB Capital in 2007 as the bank’s investment banking section. It aims to serve as the bank’s primary financial institution.
The goods and services offered by SNB Capital include wealth, fund, and portfolio management; asset management solutions; fiduciary investment advisory services; a comprehensive range of investment banking services; brokerage; and industry-leading research. The current CEO of the company is Rashed Sharif. Its headquarters is in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Investcorp, a private equity firm with roots in Bahrain, was established in 1982 and has since developed into a major participant in the sector on a global scale. In addition, Investcorp provides financial services and has operations in a variety of markets, including private equity, real estate, investments with an absolute return, infrastructure, credit management, and strategic capital. As of the 31st of March in 2002, they were responsible for managing assets worth $4.2 billion. Rishi Kapoor and Hazem Ben-Gacem are currently serving as co-chief executive officers of Investcorp. It is headquartered in Manama, Bahrain.
Dubai Investment Fund (DIF)
The Dubai Investment Fund (DIF), which manages assets worth more than $320 billion, dominates all other asset management companies (AMCs) in the UAE and is one of the largest asset management organizations. They established the fund in 2001 and now serves over 7,300 individual and institutional customers from over 61 different countries.
Family offices, insurance firms, pensions, sovereign wealth funds, and other types of financial institutions are among its clientele. The DIF dominated the UAE’s AMC environment, which manages substantially more wealth and invests in a broader range of industries than its main rivals. In contrast to the DIF, the other big AMCs, probably except Mashreq Capital, have yet to become more receptive to developing and alternative industries such as crypto and AI.
Real estate, renewable energy, financial institutions, commodities, blockchain technology, cryptocurrencies, and a variety of other business verticals are among the most important investment areas for the AMC. The shift toward new industries, most notably those associated with technology and the internet, was possible through the fund’s investments in the stocks of Google, Sony, Nvidia, and Amazon during that year.
These four companies were the top players in the technological industry at the time, and the fund purchased their stocks. Since it has a huge lead over other UAE AMCs in terms of total AuM, they expected the DIF is to remain at the top of the rankings for the foreseeable future. It’s the clear leader among UAE AMCs. Boulevard Plaza is the headquarters of the Dubai Investment Fund’s office in Dubai. Branches are located across Europe and Asia, including New York City, Frankfurt, Zürich, Sydney, and others.
SHUAA Capital was established in 1979 and is one of the oldest in the region. According to AuM, the UAE’s second-largest AMC. More than 2,000 investors trust a $14 billion investment fund to manage their money. When the investors founded SHUAA Capital in 1979, its initial name was Arabian General Investment Corporation (AGICO). When they sold the SHUAA Capital to Abu Dhabi Financial Group (ADFG) in 2016, ADFG purchased 48 percent of the company’s stock.
Asset management and investment banking are two of the firm’s primary specialties, although it also provides a wide range of other financial services.
When SHUAA and ADFG combined in 2019, the consolidated fund’s position in the UAE AMC market showed great boost. With an asset management section, SHUAA can diversify its investment portfolio even more. SHUAA, one of the nation’s largest real estate AMCs by market value, is one of this fund’s best assets. Just a few of the significant investments in Dubai include Baynunah Tower, Corniche Building, and Lulu Retail Mall in Ajman, as well as the Discovery Gardens and Spring Oasis.
Emirates NBD Asset Management
Emirates NBD Asset Management is one of Dubai’s major asset managers, and was established in 2006 and has since grown into one of the city’s top five asset managers. To keep up with investing’s fast-moving world, it has the flexibility to be adaptable while its parent bank still closely continue monitoring, Emirates NBD bank (the UAE’s second-largest bank, with total assets at AED 625 BILLION).
With $6.1 billion in assets under management as of December 2021, it manages investments for wealthy people, pension funds, and sovereign wealth funds. In 2017, EMBD REIT, one of only two REITs on the NASDAQ list of Dubai market, now has a market value of $107.5 million.
Even though Emirates NBD Asset Management is in the United Arab Emirates, all of its money is at safe security in Luxembourg or Jersey. It has a huge property portfolio.
ADCB Asset Management
ADCB Asset Management is backed by The Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, a major local bank. Founded in 2018, the bank’s asset management business presently handles over $2 billion in client assets. More than 80% of AMC’s products are ADCB-managed funds and third-party-managed funds, respectively. Over a dozen ADCB-managed equity and regional index funds are in the ADCB’s portfolio. The Luxembourg-based ADCB managed all of ADCB’s funds.
The AMC’s second product line, 3rd party-managed funds, offers investors a worldwide range of more than 400 mutual funds. ADCB Asset Management works with hundreds of fund firms to provide these solutions to its consumers. AMC’s partners in this sector include Fidelity, Allianz, BlackRock, and Goldman Sachs Asset Management.
Mashreq Capital is among the top players in the market. Furthermore, Mashreq, a major local bank, expanding into asset management services through this company. In 2006, Mashreq, the country’s oldest private bank, launched its asset management section. Currently, Mashreq Capital has $1.8 billion in AuM, which is the fifth-largest result in the United Arab Emirates.
For the most part, Mashreq Capital’s funds are in security at the Dubai International Finance Center, which is different from some of the other AMCs on our list (DIFC). Fixed-income, equities, and alternative investment funds are all managed by the AMC. Mashreq Capital is looking at alternative investments in the same way as AMC industry leader, the DIF, is, although on a smaller scale.
KAMCO Investment Company
KAMCO Invest, which was founded in Kuwait in 1998 and listed on Bursa Kuwait in 2003, is an immense financial services company. Since opening a branch at the Dubai International Finance Centre in 2016, they have established a major presence in the United Arab Emirates.
To date, they have earned a solid reputation in a wide range of financial industries, including asset management (wealth management), investment banking (brokerage), and stock research (equity analysis). The company’s investment banking arm has reportedly completed $29.2 billion in deals. There are now $14.6 billion in assets under their control as of December 2021.
At present, KAMCO is the fifth-largest investment business in the Gulf Cooperation Council. Because they strictly adhered to caution and innovation, they were one of just a few funds to make money in 2008, despite the well-publicized turbulence. As a result of their hard work, they have received several honors, most notably the “Best M&A Investment Bank in the Middle East” award in February of 2019.
Riyad Capital, since its inception in 2008, has served as Riyad Bank’s investment arm. In addition to investment banking and trading, Riyad Capital provides asset management, wealth management, and investment banking services. Since establishing a contract with BNP Paribas Securities Services in April 2021, Riyad Capital has seen its assets under management rising substantially over $18 billion.
Riyad Capital reaps the advantages of being a subsidiary of Riyad Bank, one of the most successful financial institutions in Saudi Arabia, with a corporate and retail banking franchise that is always expanding. Riyad Capital is in a position, as a result of its association with Riyad Bank, to benefit from the skills and experiences of Riyad Bank, which has a strong capital base foundation. Sabty Sulaiman Al Sabty is currently serving as chief executive officer of Investcorp. Its headquarter is in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Alinma Investment is the investment arm of Alinma Bank and was founded in Saudi Arabia in 2009. In addition to Islamic Shariah-compliant business finance, Alinma Investment offers securities brokerage and financial advising services. Having $18 billion in assets under management, the company draws advantage from being a part of Alinma Bank. The current Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Alinma Investment are Azin Baghdadi. Its headquarter is located in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
GFH. Financial Group
GFH Financial Group, a Bahraini investment bank founded in 1999, is a vibrant and varied financial institution. Treasury and proprietary investments, commercial banking, real estate development, and investment management are all available via this firm. When it comes to assets under management, GFH. Financial Group now has $12 billion and plans to grow that amount in the next years by using its extensive industry knowledge, creative thinking, and investing intelligence. Currently, Hisham Alrayes is the CEO of this company.
Wafa Gestion is held by the Attijariwafa bank to the extent of 66 percent, while the French asset management business Amundi owns 34 percent. As of the 23rd of April in the year 2021, the total assets under-managed by the business reached $15.8 billion. The business carried out operations of Wafa Gestion through four distinct distribution networks. With a market share of 25 percent as of the end of September 2020, the corporate sector regarded it as the biggest investment manager in Morocco for the last five years. This was the case as of the end of September 2020.
Jadwa Investment was founded in the year 2006, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Asset management, financial advisory services, mergers and acquisitions, brokerage services, and investment planning are some of the services that this investment organization offers. In 2020, Jadwa Investment had 8.6 billion dollars in assets under management. It represents a growth of 39 percent over the previous year. Tariq Al Suidairy, who is now the Chief Executive Officer of Jadwa, began working for the business in 2011. He worked in the capacity of Head of the Private Equity and Investment Banking Division.
Al Ahly Financial Investments Management (AFIM)
Al Ahly Financial Investments Management is the subsidiary of the National Bank of Egypt (NBE) aiding banks’ asset management operations. It managed seven different types of mutual funds in 2020. These include equities, fixed income, Islamic, balanced, and money market funds. It had a total of $1.4 billion in assets under management in that year. The executive chairman, Mansour Kelada, has an MBA from Harvard and formerly worked as a regional manager for the International Finance Corporation (IFC), which is part of the World Bank Group.
Misr Capital was incorporated by Banque Misr, Egypt’s oldest and biggest national bank, in 2010 to become a stand-alone financial services company. The Misr Capital has steadily risen to the top of Egypt’s investment sector over the years. Its assets under control are over $2 billion. Among its most significant transactions were the initial public offering (IPO) of Nile Misr Healthcare for $380 million.
Its major transaction also includes the issuing of a Sukuk for $160 million by Sarwa Capital. And also the securitization issue of $172.5 million by CI Capital’s Corplease. Khalil El Bawab, the CEO and Managing Director of the company, has a Master of Business Administration degree. He finished his studies from the Maastricht school of management. The CEO has worked previously for Arab Bank and EFG Hermes.
The Middle East has made great progress toward its aspiration. The capital aspires to become the financial center of the Middle East during the previous 15 years. Alongside the growth of other industries such as tourism, healthcare, hospitality, etc. There are other significant investments in the financial sector to develop a global financial center. Which is comparable to those found in New York City, London, Singapore, and Hong Kong. Investment in the Middle East has grown at a double-digit rate in recent years, according to Boston Consulting Group (BCG). The asset management business (AuM) grew faster than the worldwide average. It expanded by 16 percent in the Middle East to $1.2 trillion in 2021. Which is well above the 10-year growth rate.
As a result of excellent capital market performance, sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) across the region have seen an increase in their asset value. As the financial landscape returned to its pre-pandemic stability, several SWFs saw their stock exposure in developing and emerging countries increase. Additionally, retail investors were a major contributor to the growth of AuM. To compete in the new global economy, the Middle East is home to a large number and variety of financial institutions. All of which work together to ensure that citizens of the nation have access to the goods and services they want or desire.