Barclays proposed €67 billion ($91 billion) acquisition of ABN AMRO will integrate the firms respective asset management businesses to produce the worlds largest institutional asset manager, according to Barclays spokeswoman Laura Vergani. Together, Barclays Global Investors and ABN AMRO Asset Management would have $2.07 trillion in assets under management, based on figures as of Dec. 31.
If you look at BGI, it is fairly quantitative Ms. Vergani said in a telephone interview. ABN AMRO has an active fundamental base, and we see the two businesses as being perfectly complementary.
Most analysts agreed that BGI, which had about $1.8 trillion in AUM as of Dec. 31, would drive the asset management business. ABN AMRO had €193 billion in AUM at years end. According to documents released by the banks today, about €100 million will be saved from the reduction of overlap in wealth and asset management. Barclays intends to cut another €50 million by integrating distribution channels for wealth and asset management. The asset management group is not expected to be significantly affected by job cuts, according to sources who declined to be identified.
The combined parent companies will be called Barclays PLC, with headquarters in Amsterdam. Bob Diamond, president of Barclays Group, would become group president and CEO of investment banking and investment management, based in London. It has not been decided whether the newly combined asset management team would retain BGI as its name globally, according to ABN AMRO spokesman Piers Townsend.
Each business in the different regions will be looked at separately, Mr. Townsend said. Brand equity in those regions, for example, will be considered.
The transaction is scheduled for a shareholders vote in August, and it would be finalized at the end of 2007. If completed, it would be the largest European acquisition in the financial sector.