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Value Partners expands onshore China business

The Hong Kong-based firm joins a growing list of foreign managers that have obtained an onshore investment advisory licence.

Value Partners’ Shanghai-based wholly foreign-owned enterprise (WFOE) has obtained an investment advisory qualification from the Asset Management Association of China (Amac), according to a statement from the firm.

“With this qualification, we will extend our cooperation with institutions like securities and futures firms, banks, insurers, trusts and wealth management companies, to offer investment advisory services on their issued private fund products,” a Hong Kong-based Value Partners spokeswoman explained.

The number of foreign players having the investment advisory licence has grown to nine since last year, according to Amac data. Neuberger Berman and Singapore-based Fullerton Fund Management were the first players to obtain the qualification in April.

The other managers having the licence include Blackrock, APS Asset Management, Winton Capital, UBS Asset Management, Aberdeen Standard Investments and Brigewater Associates, Amac records show.

While this is the first time for foreign managers to receive such qualification, the development is not new in China, Cerulli’s Hui Miao, Singapore-based analyst at Cerulli Associates, explained previously.

“The detailed guidelines were issued in October 2016 for private securities fund managers to provide investment advisory to securities firms, fund management companies and futures companies.

“But since some qualification requirements, such as the manager needs to be a member of the AMAC and has to be registered as a PFM for at least one year, are not easy to be fulfilled by newly-registered foreign PFMs, this may not have been heavily discussed by foreign media,” she said.

Value Partners’ move comes after the firm registered its eighth private fund management (PFM) product, the Value Partners China Fengtai No. 2 Private Securities Investment Fund in November last year. Having a PFM licence enables foreign entities to develop and sell funds investing in onshore assets to domestic qualified investors, which include institutional and high net worth investors.

The firm now has at least 26 staff, according to a Z-Ben Advisor report.

Part of the Mark Allen Group.