UK – Two-thirds of full fiduciary mandates in the UK are for pension funds with less than £250m (€308m) in assets, a new survey by KPMG has shown.

According to the consultancy, the volume of assets under management in fiduciary mandates has increased nearly 40% year-on-year, with £23bn of scheme assets now committed to fully delegated fiduciary mandate.

However, of the £23bn in assets, 66% was in mandates of less than £250m, accounting for 115 of the 174 total mandates.

The remainder of the more than £50bn market stems from partial fiduciary mandates, where the outside manager is only in charge of some of the scheme's assets.

Partial delegation of investment decisions appears popular among larger funds – for while only seven full FM mandates exceeded £500m, totalling £8.8bn, 20 partially delegated mandates came above the same threshold and, at nearly £25bn, accounted for the majority of the segment's assets.

However, KPMG's head of fund manager research Alex Koriath was careful not to label partial delegation as fiduciary management.

"We see it as asset management services that range from multi-asset, fund-of-fund to multi-manager strategies," Koriath said.

"These services are being performed in greater AUM sizes by many asset managers that rightly do not try to label them as fiduciary management."

The largest share of both partially delegated clients and full fiduciary mandates were won by consultancies, which head of investment advisory Patrick McCoy noted was due to market growth being "dominated" by consultancies converting their existing client base to new contracts.

However, the success of specialist investment managers in winning mandates increased as the size of the AUM rose, KPMG added.

The company's UK Fiduciary Management Market Survey said: "These providers have won a significant portion of their appointments through the competitive tender processes. Such processes are more prevalent at the higher end of the mandate spectrum."

It added that the three largest fully delegated mandates, exceeding £1bn, were all awarded via a competitive tender.

Two were awarded to specialist managers, with the remainder – potentially the Merchant Navy Officers Pension Fund's selection of Towers Watson as delegated CIO – being won by a consultancy.

Last year, KPMG recorded more than 200 individual partial and full FM mandates, a figure that has since risen to more than 300 mandates.