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Pioneer, BNP Paribas sign separate US fund deals

US - UniCredito's Pioneer and BNP Paribas Asset Management have both announced separate agreements to buy US fund firms today.

Pioneer has agreed to buy a mutual fund management business from Alabama-based banking group AmSouth for an undisclosed sum. The business has $5.5bn (€4.5bn) in assets under management in 23 funds.

And BNP Paribas has agreed to buy wealth management firm FundQuest, also for an undisclosed sum. FundQuest has $10bn under management and it will be the French bank's brand for wealth management solutions in "open architecture" in the US and Europe.

AmSouth's funds will be reorganized into Pioneer Funds with generally similar investment objectives and strategies, AmSouth said in a statement. AmSouth has decision to exit the mutual fund business to focus on wealth management.

"This agreement is a further boost to Pioneer Investments' growth strategy and intention to become a leading global asset management player," a Pioneer spokeswoman said.

Osbert Hood, chief executive of Pioneer in the US, said the deal would benefit shareholders of both firm's funds via "new investment options and improved economies of scale".

The deal is expected to take place in the third quarter, resulting in a gain of around $50m for AmSouth.

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