Nucleus Financial grows assets 8% to £17bn

Edinburgh funds platform Nucleus Financial Group announced its assets under administration (AUA) rose 8.1% to £17.4 billion in the three months to December 31, 2020.

Earlier this week, shares of Nucleus fell following the news that IntegraFin Holdings plc “does not intend to make an offer” for Nucleus.

The news from IntegraFin left James Hay’s private equity backer Epiris LLP as the remaining potential bidder for Nucleus Financial out of a number of potential buyers announced on December 4.

Nucleus Financial’s major shareholder is Sanlam Investments of South Africa.

“Despite the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on investor sentiment and market growth, the company continues to increase AUA, which rose to £17.4bn at 31 December 2020, up 8.1% on the previous quarter and 7.9% year-on-year,” said Nucleus.

“By comparison, the FTSE All-Share Index increased 11.9% on the last quarter and fell by 12.5% year-on-year.”

Gross inflows of £492 million were achieved in Q4, a 31.9% increase on the previous quarter.

Outflows from the platform in Q4 2020 fell by 17.4% compared to Q4 2019 and were down by 22.8% for the full year 2020 compared to 2019.

Net inflows for Q4 2020 increased 35.9% against Q4 2019 to £208 million and were up 42.0% year-on-year in 2020 despite the Covid-19-induced slowdown in activity over the spring and summer.

Nucleus CEO David Ferguson said: “2020 will be remembered forever.

“In this company we’ll remember it for the encouraging recovery in net flows in the last quarter, for the product improvements (including the launch of our new model portfolio service, Nucleus IMX) and for achieving our highest-ever net promoter score, all against the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic which altered all our lives and working patterns.

“It’ll also be remembered for the transformational acquisition of the business and assets of OpenWealth as they pertain to Nucleus, which gives us greater operational control and is expected to drive further product and service improvements, all while accelerating our operating margin expansion as we grow AUA.

“Following a great start to the year and given the month-on-month improvement in net inflows since the summer (December alone exceeded all of Q3), our springtime decision to continue investing through the pandemic has allowed us to enter 2021 with great momentum, albeit remaining cognisant of the ongoing uncertainty in the external environment.”

About the Author

Mark McSherry
Dalriada Media LLC sites are edited by veteran news journalist Mark McSherry, a former staff editor and reporter with Reuters, Bloomberg and major newspapers including the South China Morning Post, London's Sunday Times and The Scotsman. McSherry's journalism has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Times, London's Evening Standard and Forbes. McSherry is also a professor of journalism and communication arts in universities and colleges in New York City. Scottish-born McSherry has an MBA from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University.