Ulster Bank has sold its fund management business, Ulster Bank Investment Managers (UBIM), to Brussels-based group KBC. The agreed price is E105m which includes estimates reserves of E5m.
Subject to regulatory approval, UBIM, with assets of E8bn, will trade under the KBC Asset Management banner.
“This is a significant deal and a most positive outcome for the clients, management and staff of the company,” says Gavin Caldwell, UBIM’s chief executive. “Asset management is considered to be one of the core businesses of KBC whose financial backing will enable us to further improve our excellent track record and high services standard,” he says. Caldwell believes that the contract will help expand the company’s traditional boundaries to meet the increased international expertise required by Dublin-based asset managers.
KBC has already significant presence in the Irish market being the sole shareholder of IIB Bank and providing corporate banking services, capital market activities and asset management. “We believe UBIM will play a critical role in the development of our institutional business plans on the international stage,” says Luc Philips, chairman of KBC Asset Management.
The sale is another step in Ulster Bank’s restructuring last month announced the acquisition of its custody and fund administration arm, Ulster Bank Investment Services (UBIS), by Northern Trust.