In the EU and the UK, alternative assets are an important part of portfolio diversification, and investment consultants play a pivotal role in advising investors on their alternative asset allocation. Preqin data shows that 52 investment consultants are currently active in the UK. The chart below shows the asset classes they cover. Around two in three (67%) consultants provide investment consultancy services for hedge funds while 60% provide service coverage for private equity and real estate respectively. Coverage of the infrastructure asset class was the lowest of the four with 52%.
Of these investment consultants, almost half (49%) offer solely non-discretionary services. Fourteen percent provide discretionary services while 37% offer both discretionary and non-discretionary services.
An example of one of the larger UK-based investment consultants is Hymans Robertson. It is one of the largest investment consultants in the UK, specializing in advisory and management services for public and private sector pension funds and it offers consultancy services across all four aforementioned alternative asset classes. Of the £14.3bn alternative assets under its advisement, the vast majority is allocated to private equity and real estate, with smaller commitments to the hedge funds and infrastructure asset classes.