Willis Towers Watson’s Asset Management Exchange (AMX) has doubled its assets under management, from $750 million to more than $1.5 billion, just three months after its launch.
The open architecture exchange aims to fundamentally transform institutional investment by providing asset owners with a smarter, easier and cheaper way to engage with managers, while offering managers access to significant capital on a global basis. Through its centralised back office and standardised fund infrastructure, AMX bypasses the investment industry’s significant cost and resource duplication, delivering scale benefits to both sides of the market while improving transparency and asset owner control.
Oliver Jaegemann, Global Head of AMX, said: “AMX has brought the digital revolution to institutional asset management, and both asset owners and managers have been swift to embrace it. The initial response to AMX illustrates the appetite among institutional investors for a centralised marketplace that gives buyers better choice and control, while managers welcome an innovation which opens up access to new customers and allows them to focus on developing and executing their investment strategies instead of spending their precious resources packaging them for sale.”
Willis Towers Watson committed a significant financial investment into the development of AMX which represents the continuation of its corporate strategy of building client-oriented solutions and operating marketplaces. A dedicated team of over 25 people is already in place and continuing to grow to satisfy demand for the exchange. The capital currently on the exchange comes from clients of the company’s Investment business, but the open-architecture nature of the exchange means that it has also been proven to have appealed to other investor bases – both inside the firm and external.
AMX is open to institutional asset owners to benefit from the economies of scale which will increase in line with asset growth. In addition, the exchange takes on the development of product packaging allowing asset managers to focus solely on investing. The capital currently on the exchange comes from clients of the company’s UK Investment business where it is already licensed to be distributed to institutional investors, but the open-architecture nature of the exchange means that it can appeal to other investor bases – both inside the firm and externally.
AMX, which launched in the UK in February 2017, is initially focusing on providing cost effective and simpler access to hedge fund strategies, with additional asset classes following later in the year.