FNB Namibia Holdings on Wednesday launched Ashburton Investments, an asset management company, as the fourth pillar of its South African shareholder, FirstRand Group.
Other FirstRand Group franchises in the Namibian financial services sector are FNB Namibia, Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) and West Bank. The entry of Ashburton into the Namibian asset management space comes after FNB Namibia received regulatory approval to acquire Pointbreak in March this year. This was a strategic move by the lender, who had faced several regulatory obstacles over the introduction of the business locally. Ashburton’s launch locally will help FNB Namibia Group increase its financial services offering to retail, corporate and institutional investors, since Ashburton prides itself as a new generation asset manager that offers investors access to more asset classes and options for investing contractual and discretionary savings. The asset manager enters the local market, after RMB Asset Management was offloaded in 2012 to MMI Holdings, following the merger between Metropolitan and Momentum. Newly appointed Chief Executive Officer of Ashburton Investments, Josephat Mwatotele, expressed his excitement about heading the new addition to the FNB Namibia stable. “We are also able to localise decision-making with our specialist technical skills base, and have a larger resource base to call on in terms of research, product development and capital to drive new product innovation. We are also excited about the new generation asset management driven by product innovation, quality research and highly skilled technical teams, with a particular focus on alternative asset management and our thorough understanding and deep insights of the local environment in which we operate to cater to our clients' unique requirements,” he said. “We seek to remain locally relevant with an international outlook to offer only the best products, services, and solutions to our clients. The introduction of Ashburton Investments in the Namibian market allows us to offer our local clients access to broader investment product options, and a greater reach through extensive distribution network of the Group.” Mwatotele added that the investment by FNB Namibia Holdings demonstrated the group’s commitment to the Namibian economy, as clients now have access to a much wider investment choice, which could be customised based on local conditions and client requirements. FNB Namibia Holdings CEO, Sarel van Zyl, dubbed the launch of Ashburton Investments a historic occasion for the group, as it provided access to the wider range of investment products and financial services offered by our group not only for existing Pointbreak investors, but also all new and future clients of Ashburton. “Together with Pointbreak Wealth Management, we are now the most comprehensive financial services solutions group in Namibia. I believe we have the best team in Namibia to deliver to this promise. Our clients are the reason for our existence, and this expansion gives us the ability to expand our thinking by adding their vision to ours,” said Van Zyl, adding that the acquisition of Pointbreak enriched the newly formed Ashburton Investments in Namibia with local skills and expertise. Pointbreak is a Namibian financial services group, providing investment management and wealth management services to the private, corporate and institutional markets, managing in excess of N$8,5 billion of third party capital, while Ashburton Investments is the asset management franchise in the FirstRand Group.