Generali Buys Fund Manager From Bank of America in Multi-boutique Push

This deal is the latest in a string of acquisitions by Generali as it seeks to become a large multi-boutique asset manager.

Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg

Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg

Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg

Italy’s Assicurazioni Generali has taken yet another step toward becoming a multi-boutique asset management firm, acquiring CM Investment Solutions from Bank of America Corp.

Generali, a Milan-based asset manager and insurance provider, announced the deal Wednesday, saying CM’s alternative UCITS funds managed more than $11 billion in assets at the end of September. UCITS stands for undertakings for the collective investment of transferable securities, Europe’s version of mutual funds.

The move is the latest in a string of deals and partnerships that Generali has said it hopes will transform the firm into a major multi-boutique asset manager globally. London-based CM will operate autonomously, with access to support from Generali as needed, according to the announcement.

“This acquisition marks an acceleration in the execution of Generali’s asset management strategy, which targets an expansion into alternative strategies and growth outside of Europe,” Generali said.

Alternative UCITS assets have grown significantly in the past decade, expanding to €582 billion ($660 billion) of assets at the end of August, from less than €100 billion in 2008, according to the announcement. The strategy’s assets have more than doubled in the past four years, Generali said.

Spokespeople for CM and Generali did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the deal.

Generali has announced other acquisitions in recent months.

In September, Generali said that it was in talks to buy a majority stake in Sycomore Asset Management. In October, the firm announced it was buying Union Investment TFI, a large Polish asset management company that oversaw €3.3 billion of assets at the time. And last month Generali said it completed the acquisition of Polish life insurance company Concordia Capital SA and non-life insurance company Concordia Polska TUW.

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Generali has also sought strategic partnerships. In September, the firm announced that it partnered with the former chief executive officer of AllianceBernstein, Peter Kraus, to create Aperture Investors, an asset management firm that charges fees similar to exchange-traded funds.