The battle for control of high net worth assets continues and discretionary fund management companies continue to look to M&A to consolidate the industry and increase their funds under management. The greater control they have over those assets, the higher fees they can charge and vertically integrating continues to be an attractive model. 

It is still easier to grow wealth managers through acquiring portfolios of assets, however the trend is now to acquire larger businesses with good quality assets that are well managed rather than small managers that lack the systems and controls to keep on top of compliance. 

Small acquisitions are rarely integrated well without losing large swathes of clients and getting certainty that you are not acquiring some legacy regulatory issues is tough. Expect to see more consolidation in the middle to large players.