UniCredit in talks with Santander to merge asset management units
MILAN, Sept 23 (Reuters) - UniCredit said on Tuesday it was in talks with Spanish bank Santander to merge their asset management units and create a powerhouse with a strong presence in Europe, Latin America and the United States.
Federico Ghizzoni, chief executive of Italy's biggest bank by assets, said he expected a deal with Santander and its asset management partners - private equity funds Warburg Pincus and General Atlantic - to be signed by the end of November.
He said that, if finalised, the proposed deal would boost UniCredit's core capital ratio by 20-25 basis points.
The planned tie-up envisages UniCredit - which is merging its Pioneer unit with Santander Asset Management - owning about one third of the combined entity, with Santander taking another third of the company and Warburg Pincus and General Atlantic owning the rest.
The two funds are expected to exit the merged entity "in a few years", and a stock market flotation is expected, with UniCredit and Santander keeping around 33 percent each of the company, Ghizzoni said.
(Reporting by Silvia Aloisi; editing by Oleg Vukmanovic)
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