Mirae-Asset-wins-global-recognition
Seen is Mirae Asset Tower in Shanghai. Courtesy of Mirae Asset Global Investments

Asset management firm goes global in full swing

Mirae Asset Global Investments began a full-fledged foray into the international market last year by acquiring Global X, setting up a joint venture in Vietnam and acquiring a license to run a private equity fund in China. Global X is a U.S. outfit specializing in ETFs.

Observers point out that the Seoul-based company has differentiated itself from other Korean financial companies with its globally balanced asset portfolio.

Mirae Asset has made deals with world-renowned investment banks for itself, which has been possible as the firm’s multinational network and alternative investment asset portfolio are highly recognized across the world,” a Seoul analyst said.

“Included in the examples are Titleist, and the Four Seasons and Fairmont hotels. And it has unparalleled financial leeway compared to its competitors here. This also helps Mirae Asset stand out.”

Mirae Asset is the runaway leader in Asia’s fourth-largest economy by any measure – its capital including retained earnings amounts to around $1.6 billion, more than six times that of the No. 2 player.

Worldwide presence

The firm, founded in the late 1990s, entered into the overseas market early on by tapping into Hong Kong in 2003. Currently, it has operations in 11 countries and employs 829 experts.

“As of the end of last year, the number of asset management firms in Korea stood at almost 250. Out of them, only 27 have advanced into foreign markets. Among all their overseas branches, Mirae Asset accounts for 24 percent,” a Mirae Asset official said.

“As of the end of last year, the number of asset management firms in Korea stood at almost 250. Out of them, only 27 have advanced into foreign markets. Among all their overseas branches, Mirae Asset accounts for 24 percent,” a Mirae Asset official said.

“We established an Indian unit in 2006, which won the hearts and minds of investors there. Its assets under management topped $3.5 billion last year. In 2008, we also started operating in the U.S. market.”

When it comes to ETFs, Mirae Asset is an international powerhouse as its net ETF assets are more than $32 billion. By taking over Global X last year, it is looking at the U.S., which accounts for 70 percent of the global ETF market.

An ETF is an exchange-traded fund, which tracks a stock index. It differs from mutual funds because its shares trade like a common stock on an exchange, and their prices fluctuate all day just like ordinary shares.

“Our balanced portfolio is second to none. Based on our competitive advantages, we hope to become a representative Korean asset management company, which wades into global markets fearlessly,” the official said.