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Rating:To Sell or Not to Sell? UniCredit Has Made Up its Mind on Pioneer Not Rated 5.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Saturday, April 23, 2011

To Sell or Not to Sell? UniCredit Has Made Up its Mind on Pioneer

Reported by Armie Margaret Lee

It's official: UniCredit has yanked Pioneer Investments [see profile] off the auction block. Officials at Milan-based UniCredit on Thursday gave word that "the best solution is for Pioneer Investments to focus on its organic growth."

Federico Ghizzoni
UniCredit
CEO
"The business is in much better shape than it was when the review process was launched," according to the UniCredit statement. "Profits and revenues were up 13% from 2009 while Assets under Management grew from 176 billion in 2009 to 187 billion in 2010. In addition, there was consistent improvement in investment performance across the main ranges with a number of standout strategies."

UniCredit's decision, which was picked up by Dow Jones and Reuters, brings to a close a review process that spanned nearly a year. Last May, UniCredit hired Bank of America Merrill Lynch to help it explore strategic options for Pioneer.

The decision to hold on to Pioneer shouldn't come as a surprise to fundsters.

In an April 8 article, Reuters reported that a possible tie-up between Pioneer and Intesa Sanpaolo's Eurizon failed to materialize. A tie-up with Eurizon was the preferred option by Italian authorities. The wire service reported that UniCredit withdrew sale plans for Pioneer "after deciding that it would be 'madness' to press ahead with a sale to a foreign buyer in the current political climate," citing an anonymous source.

Also, UniCredit was reportedly not pleased with the bids that came in from UK-based Resolution, Paris-based Amundi and Paris-based Natixis.
Company Press Release

UniCredit focuses on Pioneer Investments' organic growth

Date: April 21, 2011 - h 20:04

UniCredit informs that, following an in-depth analysis of the benefits of various options open to its Asset Management arm, it has concluded that the best solution is for Pioneer Investments to focus on its organic growth, also in light of the market evolution of the last twelve months.

Pioneer Investments has been growing organically for sometime now - its strong financial performance in 2010 reconfirms this. The business is in much better shape than it was when the review process was launched. Profits and revenues were up 13% from 2009 while Assets under Management grew from 176 billion in 2009 to 187 billion in 2010. In addition, there was consistent improvement in investment performance across the main ranges with a number of standout strategies.

A focused strategy which will further enhance the quality of Pioneer Investments' product offering while maintaining focus on delivering an outstanding level of client service is being finalised.

UniCredit is convinced that implementation of this strategy will make Pioneer Investments' franchise stronger with the ultimate goal of increasing the value it provides to the clients of the Group and enhancing the possibility to grasp further growth opportunities in the future.
 

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