FRANCE – BNP Paribas Securities Services says it has appointed sole custodian for French pensions and savings group Ionis’ €7.2bn assets.

The move follows a merger of its savings and third-party management arms which came into effect at the start of this year.

“BNP Paribas Securities Services is pleased to announce its appointment as the sole global custodian to IONIS, one of the leading French groups in the pension and retirement sector,” the bank said. “This deal represents €7.2bn assets divided amongst 330 funds.”

BNP Paribas said the business is expected to migrate during autumn 2005 and that Ionis will retain depotbank and fund accounting.

The associated retail cash services will be managed by BNP Paribas Securities Services, in partnership with the bank’s French retail banking network.

"This complex mandate would not have been secured without the teamwork excellence which engineered this deal, including the strong support from the cash products team and of course the collaboration with colleagues from BNP Paribas' retail bank,” said the bank’s sales and relationship manager Bernard Deze.

An Ionis spokeswoman was not available for comment.