Centralization of product groups leads to better portfolio relationships, says research from global analytics firm Cerulli Associates. “One shift over the past several years is the centralization of institutional and retail product development and management efforts. Centralization has become so widespread that almost three-quarters of asset managers have centralized product teams,” says Pamela DeBolt, associate director at Cerulli. “The way firms think about the retail space has shifted to a much more institutional process. The blurred lines between institutional and retail have sparked a change in how firms organize and they are now reaping the benefits of leveraging each other’s expertise and resources.” Another benefit of centralizing these efforts is streamlining the conversations between product and portfolio managers. Many teams cover both institutional and retail, but also product development and management. Additionally, product development is moving away from a region-based effort to a global focus. Groups’ responsibilities may differ from firm to firm, but there are some commonalities.
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