InvestmentsMay 31 2013

Santander sells off 50% share of fund management unit

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ByMatthew Jeynes

Banco Santander has sold a 50 per cent share of its asset management business to two private equity firms, saying it is looking to boost the firm’s assets within five years.

Private equity firms Warburg Pincus and General Atlantic have taken a 50 per cent stake in Santander Asset Management, with the bank retaining the other half, in a deal that valued the asset manager at just over €2bn.

The group offers UK financial intermediaries a range of multi-manager funds managed by Tom Caddick and Toby Vaughan.

However, the UK range had five funds included in the most recent DropZone list of underperforming funds published by Chelsea Financial Services.

Groupwide the firm has €152bn in assets in 11 countries but the bank said the deal will allow it to “expand the distribution of its products and services internationally”.

Santander said it hopes the deal will help it “compete with the leading international independent asset managers”, particularly in Europe and Latin America, and said it sees particular growth opportunities in the institutional market.

Warburg Pincus and General Atlantic are both American private equity firms with a global presence, managing $40bn and $17bn in assets respectively.