Russell Investments for sale

Asset manager, Russell Investments has been put up for sale by its private equity owner, TA Associates, which has hired Goldman Sachs to explore the sale, the Financial Times has reported.

The sale of the US$293 billion ($431.7 billion) asset manager was part of a wave of consolidation in the funds management industry, the FT said.

The FT said profits at some of the biggest fund houses had been squeezed by the rise of passive investing and shares in listed asset managers have trailed the benchmark US stock index, the S&P500, over the past five years.

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 “Russell Investments was last valued at US$1.15 billion in 2016 when TA Associates acquired the group from the London Stock Exchange,” the report said.

“It is unclear how much TA is seeking for the Russell, which claims to have invested the first so-called smart beta strategies with the creation of small capitalisation, growth and value investing funds more than three decades ago and runs multi-asset, equity, fixed income and alternative funds.”

TA Associates, the FT said, specialised in management buyouts, and had taken part in more than 20 deals involving asset managers including DNCA of France, Söderberg Partners of Sweden, and Jupiter Funds Management in the UK. It had also acquired a majority stake in Old Mutual Global Investors, now Merian, two years ago.

The FT noted that there had been growing pressure on fees form passive investing and had forced some active managers to sonsolidate such as Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management, Janus Capital and Henderson Global Investors, and Invesco’s purchase of OppenheimerFunds.

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