The strong growth in U.S. CLO issuance last year didn’t do much to shake up manager league tables, in part because so many deals came from new entrants.

But there was some churn in the top ranks.

Moody’s Investors Service,  in last week’s issue of CLOInterest, reports the “top 10 rankings in the US, Europe and globally have changed very little since 2012,” with CIFC and GSO/Blackstone in the U.S. and Alcentra in Europe remaining the pacesetters for managers of publicly rated CLOs.

In the U.S., CIFC topped the rankings in terms of deal numbers with 29, edging out GSO/Blackstone with 28 and fast-moving Carlyle with 25.  Highland Capital Management was first among managers based on dollar volume, with $12 billion of assets under management, to edge out CIFC at $11.5 billion.

Ares Management, number four on the list of U.S. CLO managers by deals with 23, edged out Credit Suisse Asset Management (CSAM), which had 21. Ares also claimed the top spot on the league table for CLO 2.0 deals, or those since the financial crisis. The six it closed on last year brought its total to 10. 

In Europe, where CLOs rated by Moody’s dropped by €10 billion due to redemptions, the CLO tables were again headed by Alcentra, last year’s leader, in both deal count (12) and by assets under management (€4.1 billion).

Carlyle rose to the number three spot in the U.S. league tables from the number five spot in 2012 (when it managed 24 deals).

This was in contrast to its slide to the number three spot on the European CLO league table from number two in 2012. It fell behind GSO/Blackstone, which had 11 deals under management in 2013, moving it up to the number two spot.  

Three top 10 U.S. firms from 2012 —Invesco, Alcentra and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts—were pushed out of the rankings this year by ING, which finished number 10 in both number deals table and for value of assets under management (Invesco and Alcentra had tied for 10th in total deals in 2012, and KKR claimed the 10th highest volume of assets).  

Moody’s report listed GSO/Blackstone as the global CLO manager league table kingpin with 39 total deals amounting to $14.8 billion in assets under management, which was ahead of Carlyle’s 34 deals totalling $14.5 billion under management.

The report also highlights the growth in the number of CLO managers last year, when 18 firms launched their inaugural deals.

While none of these newcomers make it to the top of the league tables, they account for 14.6% of managed CLOs that Moody’s rated in 2012 and 2013, and offset a record redemption rate by helping grow the volume of outstanding CLOs to $278 billion from $268 billion in 2012.  

The most active managers in the U.S. market last year were Ares and CIFC, each of which closed on six CLOs totaling around $3 billion, according to Moody’s. GSO/Blackstone and Oak Hill had five apiece, with four apiece for Carlyle, CVC/Apidos, MJX and Octagon—the latter two being newcomers to the CLO 2.0 league tables list.

Last year in the U.S., in fact, 81 managers issued new CLOs, up from 56 in 2012, according to Moody’s, with more than half of those managers issuing multiple deals.

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