Pragmatism is the key word of Didier Le Menestrel (pictured) and Stéphane Vidal, respectively chairman-CEO of La Financière de l’Echiquier (LFDE) and chairman-CEO of Primonial, about the merger deal agreed by the two Paris-based companies last December.
The transaction, expected to close during Q1 2018, will see the asset management subsidiaries of Primonial (Stamina AM, AltaRocca AM) merge into LFDE in exchange of a 40% stake for Primonial in LFDE. In addition, Christophe Mianné will become LFDE’s chief executive officer while retaining his role of deputy CEO in charge of asset management within Primonial group. Christian Gueugnier will remain deputy CEO of LFDE.
Le Menestrel and Vidal were interviewed by French trade news website Club Patrimoine at the occasion of a live web chat session on 18 January. Both leaders outlined their willingness to join distribution and fund management forces to conquer European markets outside France with the aim of further competing with other larger French asset managers, Le Menestrel having referred to those that “have 4 or 5 times our assets under management”.
Primonial’s CEO Vidal said the merger deal stricken with LFDE reflected that asset management remains a strong belief of the firm. Asked about the future of the asset management multi-boutique arm Primonial Investment Managers under which operate Stamina AM and AltaRocca currently, Vidal said the deal with LFDE was marking the end of the Primonial’s multi-boutique approach in asset management.
Le Menestrel explained that the firms will apply a practical approach regarding eventual targeted acquisitions and the integration of Stamina AM and AltaRocca into LFDE, adding that some funds could possibly be renamed to “Echiquier Stamina” or “Echiquier AltaRocca”.
Moreover, answering to a question on his personal future, LFDE’s chairman-CEO said he has no intentions to give up the reins of LFDE and leave the firm he co-founded in 1991.