Jupiter  

Jupiter/Merian deal to complete this week

Jupiter/Merian deal to complete this week

Jupiter Asset Management’s £370m takeover of rival fund house Merian Global Investors is expected to complete this week after being given the green light by the City watchdog.

An update, published this afternoon (June 29), stated the Financial Conduct Authority had today approved Jupiter’s acquisition of Merian and that the deal was expected to complete on Wednesday.

Investors should be able to trade shares in the combined entity from when markets open on July 2.

Jupiter announced in February this year it would buy rival fund house Merian Global Investors for £370m.

As at March 31, the companies had combined assets under management of £50bn.

Merian Global Investors was known as Old Mutual Global investors until fund managers at the company, led by head of UK equities Richard Buxton, took part a management buy-out in 2018. 

Mr Buxton was chief executive until standing down in June 2019, though he continues as a fund manager and head of UK equities.

After the Jupiter buyout, Merian shareholders will own a combined 17 per cent of the business while the five fund managers who were major shareholders in Merian will own about 1 per cent of the combined company.

The deal is the first significant acquisition by Jupiter chief executive Andrew Formica since he took the helm in March 2019 and Jupiter will take on and pay-off Merian’s debts as part of the buyout.

Jupiter has since pledged to keep the majority of Merian’s flagship strategies intact once the acquisition completes.

It announced earlier this month some 40 investment professionals, including 23 fund managers, would join its investment team in what it called an “important step in the development of Jupiter’s business”.

Through the move, the four major franchises from Merian — UK small- and mid-cap, UK larger companies, systematic, and gold and silver — will all transition to Jupiter.

Meanwhile the Merian Systematic Positive Skew fund will close and the Merian Global Dynamic Allocation fund is currently under review.

Areas of overlap between the two fund houses resulted in six fund managers — Ian Ormiston, Lloyd Harris, Simon Prior, Delphine Arrighi, Rob James and Mark Greenwood — leaving Merian.

Recently formed fund house Premier Miton has already swooped on Merian's ditched fixed income team, hiring Mr Harris and his colleagues Simon Prior and Przemysław Pietraszek to bolster its equivalent department.

imogen.tew@ft.com

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