Pioneer decision expected in two weeks

The fate of Pioneer Asset Management could be decided within two weeks, said Federico Ghizzoni, chief executive of UniCredit, the asset manager’s parent group.

The fate of Pioneer Asset Management could be decided within two weeks, said Federico Ghizzoni, chief executive of UniCredit, the asset manager’s parent group.

Ghizzoni said he had received a number of binding offers for Pioneer, but that there was no favourite. He gave no further details.

He was unable to confirm or deny speculation that Amundi, the joint venture between Societe Generale and Credit Agricole, was the front runner among the bidders. These include the Franco-American group Natixis, BNP Paribas, US financial services group Ameriprise and UK buyout vehicle Resolution.

Amundi has appointed Rothschild, Morgan Stanley and, according to some reports, Mediobanca as financial advisers to manage the review.

UniCredit first announced it was reviewing options for Pioneer, Italy’s number-two asset manager, in May last year. UniCredit appointed Bank of America Merrill Lynch to explore all options, including a sale. UniCredit has stressed that obtaining the right price is key to the sale. The option of shelving the sale is still on the cards.

One option under discussion is the sale of the Italian interests in Pioneer to an Italian bidder, with the US part of the business (worth some 20% of the group) being sold separately. Corrado Passera, chief executive of Italian banking group Intesa Sanpaolo has denied having any interest in adding Pioneer’s Italian interests to his asset manager subsidiary Eurizon.

Pioneer was valued last year by investment bank Banca Leonardo at €3.5bn to €4bn euros. At end of 2009, the asset manager had €2.5bn in assets under management.

preloader
Close Window
View the Magazine





You need to fill all required fields!