POLAND – The first merger of two pension fund management companies in the fledgling Polish pensions market has been approved with the tie up of the Invesco/Polish church venture ARKA-INVESCO and Pocztowo-Bankowe PTE, the pension operation of the Polish post office Poctza Polska and BNP Paribas and its French insurance arm Cardif.

Initially, the Poctza Polska/BNP Paribas group will manage the open fund assets of both groups before consolidation of the assets under the OFE Pocztylion brand during the next few months.
The combined groups will share around 450,000 members and manage assets in the region of PLN273m, becoming a mid-size player in the market.
OFE Pocztylion brings in the lion’s share of members and assets with 380,000 people on the books and assets worth PLN212m.
The ARKA-INVESCO group has signed up 70,00 members with savings of PLN61m.

The pension companies say the merger is designed to tie up shared client groups and obtain better economic results.
Mariusz Wiatrowski, president of the management board of Pocztowe Bankowe PTE, comments: “ I am deeply convinced that the joining together of the strong sides of both societies will be in the best interest of both the current and future members of OFE Pocztylion. The consolidation of assets will enable us to make more profitable investments, make our offer more accessible and improve even more our client service. We are not planning any major changes in our investment strategy.”

In the merged society, the Polish Post Office and BNP Paribas/Cardif will hold 33.3% of the assets each, with INVESCO parent group AMVESCAP sharing the remaining 33.3% with the Conference of the Polish Episcopate.
The new company remains one of the few in the market with a significant Polish ownership stake. The policy of investing in ethical enterprises put into place by ARKA-INVESCO will not change, the company says.