UK’s Henderson To Buy Troubled Gartmore Group

Jan 12 2011 | 8:10am ET

The troubled Gartmore Group hedge fund and asset manager has found a buyer.

The Henderson Group, parent company of Henderson Global Investors, has offered an undisclosed amount for Gartmore, which has been losing top people since the departure of star manager Roger Guy and was forced to lay off 35 people last month.

The sale will result in a company with about £78 billion assets under management, making it one of the largest UK retail asset managers by AUM.

Under the terms of the proposed acquisition, Gartmore shareholders would receive two Henderson shares for every three Gartmore shares. Henderson says the boards of both Gartmore and Henderson intend to recommend unanimously to shareholders that the offer be accepted.

Henderson says managers representing 84% of Gartmore’s AUM have agreed to join Henderson—these include Charlie Awdry (emerging markets), John Bennett (European equities), Chris Burvill (cautious managed), Rob Giles (UK small cap), Tony Lanning (multi-manager), Adam McConkey (UK small cap), Luke Newman (UK long/short equities), Chris Palmer (emerging markets), Simon Peters (long/short financials), Neil Rogan (global equities), John Stewart (Japan long/short equities) and Ben Wallace (UK long/short equities).

Commenting on the proposed acquisition, Andrew Formica, chief executive of Henderson Group, said:

“The acquisition of Gartmore is a great opportunity for Henderson. Gartmore has a highly complementary strategy and stable of products to that of Henderson. Its recent travails should not overshadow the fact that Gartmore is one of the best known managers in UK fund management and its assets are performing well. By bringing across fund managers and integrating the business onto our own platform we will be able to enhance margins significantly. We will also better serve both sets of clients by expanding our product range, for instance in absolute return.”

Based in London, Henderson is one of Europe’s largest investment managers, with an estimated £61.6 billion assets under management, as of 31 December 2010, and 930 employees worldwide.

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