Baroda Asset Management and BNP Paribas Asset Management on Friday said they have decided to merge their businesses in a bid to leverage each other’s strengths to offer products for retail and institutional investors. However, this is subject to regulatory and other legal approvals.

Bank of Baroda and BNP Paribas Asset Management Asia have entered into binding agreements, the two entities said in a joint statement.

The strategic alliance would allow both companies to leverage each other’s strengths to offer products specially designed for retail and institutional clients in India, it said.

Baroda Asset Management is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bank of Baroda, while BNP Paribas Asset Management India is an entity of BNP Paribas Asset Management Asia

“We are pleased to partner with a global organisation such as BNP Paribas Asset Management. We value their expertise and the robust investment and risk management processes they have to offer.

“This joint venture will allow us to create a stronger, more competitive asset management company in the Indian mutual fund industry with the large distribution network of Bank of Baroda and the expertise of BNP Paribas coupled with the benefit of the firm’s ability to source offshore funds,” said P S Jayakumar, MD and CEO, Bank of Baroda.

Ligia Torres, CEO Asia Pacific at BNP Paribas Asset Management, said this strategic partnership reinforces the company’s local footprint as well as global outreach in Asia Pacific.

“By leveraging Bank of Baroda’s large number of branches for distribution and our global experience of managing assets across more than 30 markets, this partnership will enable us to offer products and services to a much larger investor base in India,” Torres added.

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Bank of Baroda is being assisted by BOB Capital Markets as its transaction advisor, Khaitan & Co as its legal advisor and Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India LLP as its financial due-diligence advisor.

BNP Paribas Asset Management is being assisted by BNP Paribas Investment Banking as its transaction advisor, AZB & Partners as its legal advisor and PricewaterhouseCoopers as its financial due-diligence advisor.

In recent months, the 44-player mutual fund industry, which together manages assets worth over Rs 25 lakh crore, has been grappling with redemption pressures in the wake of debt crises at various groups, including IL&FS, Essel and Dewan Housing Finance Corporation (DHFL).





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