, the French investment bank announced that it is selling 80.1% of its asset management business to Arnhold and S. Bleichroeder Inc.
, the international investment banking firm.
, president of SoGen Funds will maintain his 19.9% interest in the asset management arm and join John P. Arnhold
as co-president of A&SB.
The funds managed by SoGen include SoGen International
, SoGen Overseas
, SoGen Gold
, and SoGen Money Market Fund
, plus an offshore and variable annuity fund. The assets in the funds exceed $2.6 billion.
A&SB have two mutual funds, First Eagle Fund of America
and First Eagle International Fund
along with seven offshore funds with total assets valued at about $4 billion.
"We are pleased that we will be working with the SoGen Funds, which have excelled in the international investing arena. They will significantly enhance our array of retail investment products," Arnhold said.
, a mutual fund sales representative at SoGen said Societe General has been looking to shed its asset management product line for over a year.
He said that the sale had nothing to do with the deal between Paribas
and Bank National de Paris
, who announced plans to merge earlier in the year, leaving SoGen out of the trio.
Shareholders were not accepting of the potential merger between Paribas and/or BNP, Clemetsen said, although he does not anticipate any problems with the proposed A&SB deal.
After the merger, SoGen's funds will be renamed First Eagle SoGen Funds. The management teams from both banks have signed 5 year contracts Clemetsen said.
"There will be no changes in the sales and marketing department," Clemetsen said. "First Eagle does not have a large marketing department so the two will be merging."
First Eagle primarily distributes its funds through financial advisors although SoGen has agreements with all the top firms except Merrill Lynch and Dean Witter, Clemetsen said. "Most of our business comes from Schwab."
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