Best wealth manager for NHWIs 2017
Noah Holdings, founded in 2005 in Shanghai, is one of China’s first independent wealth management firms. It is also the first to go public overseas – it launched an IPO on the New York Stock Exchange in 2010. Noah has built unrivalled strength in serving high net-worth clients in China.
It had more than 135,000 HNW clients and managed assets worth Rmb380.8 billion ($55.4 billion) by the end of 2016, making it by far the largest independent wealth management firm in China. And these results were achieved on the back of the huge investment the firm has made in manpower, its business network and proprietary WM capability.
Among independent WM firms, Noah operates the most extensive business network in China. At the end of 2016, it had 1,169 professionals serving clients from 185 outlets in 71 domestic cities. Its business network now covers all the top-tier cities, provincial capitals and other cities in economically developed regions in China, such as east China’s Yangtze river delta and south China’s Pearl river delta where HNW populations are concentrated.
Noah has established a rigorous mechanism to screen WM products and manage associated risks for clients. When selecting products, its team looks for the best choices for customers by considering the risks, returns and liquidity of WM products. Each year, the team screens more than 2,000 WM products. But after a series of studies and assessments, they recommend less than 5% of the products to clients.
Nearly all of the independent WM firms in China started out as sales agencies for other companies’ products. But as competition increased, the way for these firms to get ahead was to develop and manage their own products. Noah is clearly aware of this. In 2010 it set up a subsidiary, Gopher Asset Management, to strengthen its proprietary asset management capability.
Gopher has become a leading alternative asset manager in China, managing private equity, real estate, secondary market and other investments denominated in both renminbi and foreign currencies.