(pictured: Milton Samios)
The world of what’s known as ‘native advertising’ seems to be meeting the world of funds management head on. In the latest move, Investec Australia has bought a stake in newsletter and investment spruiker ‘Wholesale Investor’.
Fund manager Investec has taken an undisclosed stake for an undisclosed amount in ‘Wholesale Investor’, a free newsletter with a claimed circulation of 13,000 in Australia and Asia that promotes small-cap investments and other opportunities for a fee.
The ‘native’ market, whereby media outlets promote products either with or without the explicit disclaimer that they are being paid for the editorial, is the fastest-growing area in online advertising, apart for search.
The Investec deal follows the recent purchases by InvestSmart, the listed company formerly known as Australasian Wealth Investments, of News Corp’s Alan Kohler newsletter ‘Eureka Report’ and the independent ‘Intelligent Investor’.
Coupled with start-ups in the space, such as Shed Media’s ‘New Investor’*, which focuses on the upper end of the advised market, and several other more mature offerings which focus on spruiking to the unadvised and SMSF trustee market, the deal is being seen as legitimising ‘native’ as a new form of retail distribution for funds managers and other financial services firms.
Milton Samios, Investec’s chief executive, said his company was particularly attracted to ‘Wholesale Investor’s’ Hong Kong and UK reach, including events.
The media industry is currently split on whether ‘native’ is good for consumers, many of whom may not realise the editorial is being paid for.
*The author is the editor of New Investor, which is owned by Shed Media. It is a weekly title which has a circulation of approximately 31,000 consisting of financial planners, SMSF accountants and fund managers. It blends client promotions with traditional independent journalism.