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Money Management

Commonwealth Bank of Australia to file IPO for First State Investments this year

First State Investments will be listed by owner Commonwealth Bank of Australia by the end of the year.

The decision to pursue an initial public offering of the firm followed a strategy review of CBA's global money management business, said a statement on the bank's website Tuesday.

The Sydney-based bank's money management unit is known in Australia as Colonial First State Global Asset Management. It has A$219 billion ($170 billion) in assets under management across equities, fixed income, multiasset, and alternatives and real assets strategies.

The review was announced in September and considered a number of options. "In making our assessment, we examined long-term Commonwealth Bank shareholder value and also considered the ability of CFSGAM to serve the interests of its clients, attract and retain key personnel and better grow its business," said the statement.

While the money manager has achieved growth, scale and diversification under its current ownership structure, CBA said its review "determined that an independent ownership model would provide greater benefits."

CBA intends to list the firm on the Australian Securities Exchange by the end of the year, subject to market conditions and approvals. Ahead of the potential listing, CBA said it and Colonial First State had appointed new independent non-executive directors, while Mark Lazberger will remain CEO of the money manager.

Spokesmen for CBA could not be reached for further information.