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Rating:At Long Last, the Pioneer Sale is Happening Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Monday, December 12, 2016

At Long Last, the Pioneer Sale is Happening

Reported by Katy Golvala

It's been a long time coming, but UniCredit has finally announced a deal for the sale of Pioneer Investments. And the buyer is not a surprise.

Giordano Lombardo
Pioneer Investments
Amundi will pay 3.545 billion euros, or $3.76 billion, in cash, to acquire the asset management arm of the Italian bank. Additionally, UniCredit will receive 315 million euros ($334 million) from Pioneer via a "pre transaction extraordinary dividend," according to a statement by the bank.
[See MFWire's living timeline of the Pioneer auction for more details and history.]

Under the agreement, Amundi will be purchasing all of Pioneer Investments, excluding operations in Poland. Pioneer manages 222 billion euros, or $235 billion, in assets and has a presence in 28 countries around the world. The company has 2,000 employees, including about 350 investment professionals.

According to an article by Bloomberg, Amundi CEO Yves Perrier plans to cut "a bit less" than 10 percent of the combined company, or about 450 people. However, he expects to add employees "related to development projects" and plans to double headcount to about 600 people in Milan, which will become one of the company's investment hubs.

UniCredit's financial advisors were J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, and UniCredit Corporate and Investment Banking. Gianni, Origoni, Grippo, Cappelli and Partners served as legal advisors. Amundi's financial advisors were Mediobanca SpA, Goldman Sachs, and Credit Agricole CIB, according to an article by Bloomberg.

The third time is the charm for this deal, which has been in the making since UniCredit announced its asset management business was on the block over six years ago. Once it's final, Amundi will be the eighth largest asset manager globally, with 1.276 trillion euros ($1.35 trillion) of assets under management. As part of the transaction, the two companies will enter into a ten-year distribution agreement in Italy, Germany, and Austria.

Though Amundi is publicly traded, it is majority controlled by the French bank Credit Agricole. Credit Agricole "will underwrite the 1.4 billion euros capital increase ... [and] Amundi will finance the remaining consideration by 1.5 billion euros of excess capital and 0.6 billion euros of senior and subordinated debt," according to a statement by the company.

With over 1.054 trillion euros ($1.12 trillion) in AUM worldwide, Paris-based Amundi is already the largest European asset manager. The firm notes that this deal will reinforce its leadership position in key markets, expand its retail network, and bolster its institutional network, according to a statement issued earlier today.

"Pioneer Investments is a world class asset manager that has a highly complimentary business and geographic profile," states Perrier.

The deal is expected to close in the first half of 2017. 

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