Aperio’s personalised indexing capabilities are expected to enhance BlackRock’s wealth platform


BlackRock to boost its wealth platform with the acquisition of Aperio. (Credit: Americasroof/Wikipedia.org)

BlackRock has signed an all-cash deal worth $1.05bn to acquire Aperio, a provider of personalised index equity solutions, from the latter’s employees and Golden Gate Capital.

Based in California, Aperio partners with wealth advisors to develop and manage customised index equity separately managed accounts (SMAs) in line with the unique risk, tax, and personal values preferences of clients.

The company has been catering to ultra-high-net-worth (UHNW) clients and institutional investors for more than two decades.

As of 30 September 2020, the company had $36bn of assets under management.

Aperio co-heads Liz Michaels and Ran Leshem said: “With BlackRock, we have found a like-minded fiduciary firm with long-standing roots in tax-efficient indexing, a commitment to sustainable investing, and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, and a track record of delivering consultative whole portfolio solutions to wealth management intermediaries.

“We are excited to harness BlackRock’s capabilities and reach to keep innovating on behalf of an even larger base of wealth managers and institutional investors.”

BlackRock has also been providing SMAs for wealth management-focused intermediaries in the US. Its SMA franchise is said to specialise in offering personalised actively-managed fixed income, equity, and also multi-asset strategies.

Aperio deal to increase BlackRock’s SMA assets by 30%

The US-based investment management firm said that its combination with Aperio will boost its SMA assets by nearly 30% to more than $160bn.

Besides, it expects to enhance its wealth platform by adding Aperio’s customised indexing capabilities that include tax-managed equities, factors, and environmental, social and governance (ESG) strategies.

Post-acquisition, the California-based firm will operate as a separately branded, vertically integrated team within the US wealth advisory business of BlackRock.

Aperio will also retain its investment, business development, client service, and (ESG) and socially responsible investing (SRI) processes.

BlackRock US wealth advisory business head Martin Small said: “The wealth manager’s portfolio of the future will be powered by the twin engines of better after-tax performance and hyper-personalization. BlackRock and Aperio, working together, will bring unmatched capabilities to meet these objectives.

“The combination will bring institutional quality, personalized portfolios to ultra-high net worth advisors and will create one of the most compelling client opportunities in the investment management industry today.”

The deal is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2021.