Italian bank Unicredit and Paris-based asset manager Amundi have announced they are in exclusive negotiations regarding the sale of the former’s asset management division, Pioneer Investments.
Pioneer has been on the market for some time, it was thought that its owner Unicredit and Santander had come to an agreement last year to merge their asset management businesses.
However, this was called off earlier this year with Unicredit citing that a failure to meet “regulatory requirements” forced the deal to be abandoned.
Aberdeen Asset Management recently pulled out of the running to purchase Pioneer when Aberdeen’s chief executive, Martin Gilbert, felt that €3.5 billion was too expensive for the asset.
Although there were a few remaining players in the bidding, today’s announcement suggests that Amundi may finally acquire Pioneer, a long-term goal of the firm’s chief executive Yves Perrier.
Since Amundi’s initial public offering last year, the firm had a lot of dry powder and the market was waiting to see which acquisitions it would make. It now seems likely that Pioneer will become part of Europe’s largest asset manager, Amundi.
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