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Australia's best corporate and investment bank 2017: Macquarie


The so-called millionaires’ factory of Macquarie Group motored on in 2017, largely as it has for the last decade and more, at the top of its game.

In October, Australia’s biggest investment bank smashed market expectations with an A$1.25 billion ($940 million) half-year profit en route to what is expected to be another record for the 2017/18 full financial year.

That is thanks in large part to the fee bonanza Macquarie is reaping from its spending spree over the years in international infrastructure, where it is now a global leader. Macquarie’s international operations generated almost two thirds of its profits.

With operations in 28 countries, asset management this year had A$473 billion in assets under its wing, making it the group’s main profit engine. Macquarie’s asset management arm banked A$537 million in performance fees from its infrastructure-based funds.

That’s good news for Shemara Wikramanayake, the division’s boss since 2008. A succession of stellar results on her watch means she is tipped to succeed Nicholas Moore, Macquarie’s long-standing chief executive.

Macquarie’s reputation for measured risk was enhanced when central banker Glenn Stevens, the Reserve Bank of Australia’s pro-growth governor from 2006 to 2016, joined Macquarie’s board in October.

The trailblazing Macquarie’s next big investment theatre? Its green group has about $20 billion invested in renewable technologies.