“I think you'll see a 'boomlet' in mergers-and-acquisition activity over the next 12 months,” said Ben F. Phillips, partner at Casey Quirk & Associates, a consultancy that advises on asset management deals. “The pricing gap between bidders and askers has narrowed.”
“Today, where you're going to see more mergers-and-acquisition activity is in the alternatives field where the major players are seeking expertise in relatively unusual areas,” said Burton J. Greenwald, a fund consultant who works with Franklin Templeton (BEN) Investments (BEN). “That's a special product area that's growing rapidly and requires a very narrow expertise.”
Mr. Phillips agreed that firms with strengths in alternatives are in high demand. He also said asset managers are seeking investment expertise in credit, global investments and multiasset allocation.