US-based insurance company New York Life has re-entered talks with Dexia over the sale of Dexia Asset Management immediately after Hong Kong-based private equity firm GCS Capital pulled out of the deal this summer, according to a Dexia spokeswoman.
Contacted by IPE, Dexia’s spokeswoman said New York Life was already in the first phase of negotiations late last year when GCS made an offer to acquire Dexia AM.
“Once negotiations ended with GCS Capital due to the non-respect of their agreement, New York Life grabbed the opportunity to launch talks with Dexia again,” she said.
In a statement released last week, Dexia announced it entered into exclusive negotiations with New York Life Investments for the sale of its asset management unit.
Dexia added that any agreement would be subject to the finalisation of its key terms and the employee consultation process.
These negotiations will be followed by the signing of a Share Purchase Agreement.
“The anticipated sale of Dexia AM to New York Life Investments heralds a promising future for our company,” Dexia said, “particularly in view of the complementarities between the two firms.”
However, early last week, another company, FinEx Capital, said it made an undisclosed offer to acquire 100% of Dexia Asset Management.
Simon Luhr, managing partner and chief executive at FinEx Capital Management, said the company had been looking to acquire an asset manager “for some time”, in order to add scale to its existing platform before expanding into Asia.
“We have been following the Dexia situation for some time and have decided to enter an offer to acquire [it],” he said.
“The business offers us a platform that is the right size and product mix for us, and it will allow us to continue to grow our business.”
Commenting on this move, Dexia’s spokeswoman said FinEx Capital decided on its own to make such an announcement, adding that Dexia had in the meantime entered into exclusive talks with New York Life.
She declined to comment further on whether Dexia would reject FinEx Capital’s offer, pointing out that talks were still ongoing with all parties involved.