Buyout funds approach Santander and Intesa over Allfunds deal: sources

Fri Nov 11, 2016 12:57pm EST
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By Pamela Barbaglia

LONDON (Reuters) - Buyout firms have approached Santander Asset Management SASS.SN and Intesa Sanpaolo (ISP.MI: Quote) over a possible takeover of the Allfunds Bank mutual fund platform, sources told Reuters.

U.S. buyout fund Bain Capital and Europe's Advent are planning to make a joint bid for the business, which could be worth up to 2 billion euros ($2.2 billion), the sources said.

Cinven [CINV.UL], Permira, BC Partners and Hellman & Friedman have also discussed Allfunds with its Spanish and Italian owners, prompting a strategic review of the platform.

Santander Asset Management and Intesa, which own 50 percent each of the Madrid-based firm, have decided to sell their shares and are seeking advice from large investment banks to begin an auction before the end of the year, the sources said.

Mid-sized asset managers appeal to private equity investors as they generate stable returns and offer scope for growth over a three to five year period.

Santander Asset Management, Intesa Sanpaolo, Cinven, Advent, BC Partners and Hellman & Friedman all declined to comment, while Bain Capital and Permira were not immediately available.

Banco Santander (SAN.MC: Quote) has a 50 percent stake in Santander Asset Management, while U.S. buyout firms Warburg Pincus [WP.UL] and General Atlantic control the remainder.

Santander Asset Management is selecting an adviser, while Intesa is working with U.S. bank Morgan Stanley, they said.   Continued...

Buildings are reflected on a logo of a Santander bank branch in central Madrid, Spain, April 6, 2016. REUTERS/Juan Medina