Morgan Stanley acquires stake in French group Tikehau

Morgan Stanley is acquiring a 5.5 per cent stake in French asset manager Tikehau as the Paris-based company looks to tap North American investors and new asset classes.

The US bank will invest at least €300m of fresh equity into the asset manager, together with other existing investors in a deal signed last week, people familiar with the transaction said.

The move is part of a wider trend of asset managers selling minority positions to third parties as they seek permanent capital to expand into new markets and products.

“New shareholders bring industry and local expertise,” said Mathieu Chabran, co-founder of Tikehau.

“All asset managers are looking for long-term capital because they help take the business forward with strategic ideas, opening of new offices and new asset classes.”

The transaction is expected to be announced officially on Monday morning.

Mr Chabran and fellow co-founder Antoine Flamarion will remain controlling shareholders with more than 60 per cent of the share capital alongside management, people familiar with the matter said.

The proceeds from a share capital increase, which will also see existing shareholders inject additional capital, will be used to boost Tikehau’s plan for growth and expansion, these people said.

Morgan Stanley is investing in Tikehau through its North Haven Tactical Value, a unit within the US bank focused on deploying opportunistic capital.

The investment is into Tikehau asset manager and not its listed vehicle.

“Tikehau Capital is a premier asset manager comprised of seasoned investment professionals with strong investment performance,” said Pedro Teixeira, co-head of Morgan Stanley’s investment vehicle. 

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Founded by two former bankers at Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs in 2004, the European asset manager has more than doubled its assets under management since listing in 2017 from €10bn to more than €22bn today.

It has hired top financiers and high-profile political figures, including François Fillon, the former French presidential candidate.

This is not the first time Tikehau has had a minority shareholder. In 2016 Singapore’s Temasek injected €510m of fresh equity as it looked to buy debt and equity in European companies.

Alternative asset managers have rushed to sell stakes to peers, including Blackstone and Dyal Capital, in recent years. Last summer, London-based private equity group Bridgepoint sold a small stake to Dyal Capital in a deal that will see the New York-based investment firm take portion of dividends and performance fees. 


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