ICICI Pru topples Reliance as MF assets hit Rs 9 lakh cr

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The mutual fund industry’s asset under management (AUM) crossed the Rs 9 lakh crore mark at the close of financial year 2013-14 thanks to strong inflows in the last quarter.

Data from the Association of Mutual Funds in India (Amfi) showed the industry gained Rs 27,384 crore assets in the March quarter to end the financial year at Rs 9.039 lakh crore. Amfi releases fund house-wise AUM data every quarter.

HDFC Mutual Fund, which remained unchallenged on top with Rs 1.129 lakh crore in assets, mopped up Rs 4,000 crore during the quarter, but ICICI Mutual Fund saw fastest asset growth to become the second biggest fund house in terms of assets. It added Rs 9,631 crore in March quarter to report an AUM of Rs 1.068 lakh crore at the end of FY14.

Reliance Mutual Fund slipped to the third spot from second with an asset base of Rs 1.035 lakh crore. Earlier in October 2011, HDFC Mutual Fund had dethroned Reliance Mutual Fund as the largest fund house in terms of asset under management.

Birla Sunlife Mutual Fund was placed fourth with AUM of Rs 89,000 crore and UTI Mutual Fund fifth with Rs 74,000 crore. There are 45 operational mutual fund houses in the country.

“The spurt in assets was primarily due to inflows to income and equity-oriented funds. But liquid funds saw outflows that eroded higher gains in assets,” rating agency Crisil said. The agency provides mutual fund ranking in India.

ICICI Prudential Mutual Fund saw inflows of Rs 1,250 crore to a new series of value funds that were launched around the time the domestic stock market started rising in the middle of the quarter. Equity benchmark Sensex ended the quarter with 6 per cent gain.

“We also saw inflows to our existing equity funds, especially through the SIP (systematic

investment plan) route, besides good flows to debt funds,” said an official at the fund house. “The industry is seeing inflows, but that has come to the fund houses and schemes that have sound track records,” he claimed.

SBI Mutual Fund also saw a jump in AUM, which rose from Rs 54,905.44 crore to Rs 65,499.47 crore during the financial year. The fund house is ranked sixth in terms of assets. Baroda Pioneer Mutual Fund added Rs 888.7 crore during the March quarter, taking its AUM to Rs 8,105.90 crore. “Our AUM grew because of traction seen in the equity space in terms of new investors and the greater reach we have achieved by tapping the SMEs network,” the fund house said in a release.

“We expect the buoyancy in equity and debt markets to help grow the corpus further,” said Jaideep Bhattacharya, managing director of Baroda Pioneer Mutual Funds. However, total assets of the industry fell by Rs 12,464 crore in March from around Rs 9.163 crore at the end of February.

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