Aberdeen rules out sale of business

Aberdeen Gilbert Martin Gilbert 700x450Aberdeen Asset Management chief executive Martin Gilbert has confirmed that the asset manager will not be put up for sale after press reports last month speculated it was seeking a buyer.

Media outlets had reported Aberdeen was sounding out potential buyers to turn around outflows and a drop in profitability and that Gilbert had made informal approaches to several rivals over recent months.

The chief executive told Bloomberg: “I have ruled it out. Being independent is absolutely vital to us as a business. So we have completely ruled it out.

“But basically we have to ride out the cycle and wait for Asia and emerging markets to come back into fashion.”

The fund group’s share price has fallen 25 per cent over the past six months, and Aberdeen saw net outflows of almost £10bn to the end of June. Total assets are £307bn.

Gilbert also said that the company, although making various business acquisitions throughout the year, has still had potential savings to make.

He added: “We’re always looking at costs…We bought a big business from Lloyds Bank two years ago…We bought at precisely the right time in the market…It’s been a really, really good acquisition and we’re still working in a lot of integration there and taking out costs. So there’s still costs.”

Aberdeen Asset management said on Monday it will announce “a small number” of job cuts at the end of the month but said investment roles will be spared.