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Money Management

Franklin Templeton’s Seoul business to merge with Samsung Asset Management subsidiary

Franklin Templeton (BEN) Investments (BEN) will merge its business in Seoul with the active domestic equity arm of Samsung Asset Management Co. in a deal that will allow Franklin to distribute its global strategies to Korean investors.

Seoul-based Franklin Templeton Investment Trust Co., established in 1988, and Samsung Active Asset Management Co., a subsidiary of Samsung Asset Management launched at the start of 2017, will merge, subject to regulatory approval, according to a joint news release Wednesday by the two companies.

Spokesmen for the companies said the target date for the merger is July 1.

SungMin Hwang, a spokesman for Samsung Active Asset Management, said his firm will bring capabilities in domestic large-cap growth, as well as small- and midcap equities to the merger, with combined assets under management of roughly 6 trillion won ($5.6 billion). Parent company Samsung Asset Management's AUM currently stands at $209 billion, according to the news release.

Franklin spokesman Peter Joblin said Franklin Templeton Investment Trust Co.'s investment team in Seoul is focused on domestic large-cap value equities. He declined to provide details on assets under management.

Mr. Joblin said the two firms are looking to have equal ownership stakes in Samsung Franklin Templeton Asset Management Co.

The news release said the combined firm will be able to offer a broader range of actively managed domestic equity strategies as well as a "full range of global investment products offered by Franklin Templeton Investments" to Korean investors.