Exchange traded fund assets remain concentrated in the three largest firms, but smaller companies offering specialized ETFs are making progress chipping away at market share.

Heavyweights iShares, State Street and Vanguard are seeing more competition as the smaller ETF providers step up their game, reports Jackie Noblett for Ignites.

Alps gathered at least $650 million in asset inflows this year thanks to the success of Alerian MLP ETF  (NYSEArca: AMLP). [ETF Spotlight: Master Limited Partnerships]

WisdomTree gained $338 million year-over-year, while commodities and international ETF expert Global X touts about $521 million in asset under management this year, up from $144 million, according to the Ignites report.

“Some investors and advisors may be wary of investing in a smaller firm because they’ve seen firms come and go. But if you achieve some level of success, people may be more comfortable,” says Alec Papazian, senior analyst at Cerulli Associates.

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