Aberdeen buys New York boutique in major US push

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Aberdeen Asset Management has snapped up New York-based fixed income specialist Artio Global Investors as part of plans to increase its presence in the North American market.

The deal, which is worth $175 million, coincides with Aberdeen taking a 50.1% stake in London-based private equity and advisory company SVG Advisers.

The purchase of Artio Global Investors is designed to add more capabilities to Aberdeen’s existing US fixed income operations, with Artio running a number of bond funds which account for $9.8 billion of its total assets. The US boutique also runs a number of global and domestic equity strategies which account for $4.5 billion of its assets.

The transaction is expected to be completed by the end of the second quarter of 2013 or early in the third quarter. It is subject to customary closing conditions, including US antitrust approval and board approval by Artio.

Commenting on the deal, Martin Gilbert (pictured), chief executive of Aberdeen AM, said: ‘The integration of Artio’s operations will strengthen further our US fixed income expertise, in particular the addition of US total return and global high yield products, and will help to broaden and deepen our distribution network in the US.’

The funds that are currently included in Artio's fund range are Artio Total Return Bond, Artio Global High Income and Artio International Equity funds.

Artio Global Investors - which is a former subsidiary of Julius Baer - had previously also operated a US equity arm, with two funds registered for sale in Dublin.

However, it opted to shut down its entire US equity range in October of last year due to a continued loss of assets.

At present, Artio oversees $14.3 billion in assets on behalf of institutional and retail clients. Its current net-asset value stands at $141 million, as well as $136 million in cash and seed investments.

The deal to purchase Artio was announced at the same time as Aberdeen revealed it had taken a 50.1% stake in SVG Advisers for a cash consideration of £17.5 million ($27.1 million).

The company, which is a subsidiary of SVG Capital, currently has £4 billion ($6.21 billion) in assets under management.

It is set to be added to Aberdeen’s existing private equity arm and included in a private equity fund of funds business which will have almost £5 billion ($7.7 billion) in assets under management.