BlackRock to buy Mexican asset manager

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US asset manager BlackRock is to acquire the asset management arm of Citibanamex – a subsidiary of Citigroup – through a deal pending of regulatory approval and expected to close in the second half of 2018.

The operation – whose terms were not disclosed – will also entail a distribution agreement, through which Citibanamex clients in Mexico will have access to BlackRock asset management products.

According BlackRock, the transaction is part of Citigroup’s emphasis on expanding access to best-in-class investment products and involves some US$31bn (€26.11bn) in assets under management of Citibanamex – across local fixed income, equity, and multi-asset products, primarily for retail clients.

Armando Senra, Head of Latin America and Iberia for BlackRock, said: “BlackRock’s ambition is to become a full solutions provider in key markets around the world. This transaction is a big step forward in that direction in Mexico. The acquisition of Citibanamex’s asset management capabilities combined with our global investment platform and technology create a stronger franchise that can deliver a more compelling set of investment solutions across client segments in Mexico.”

Jane Fraser, CEO of Latin America for Citigroup, added: “Our goal is to create a state-of-the-art bank in Mexico focused on delivering a richer, smarter, more intuitive experience to everyone who does business with Citibanamex. The agreement with BlackRock delivers on our commitment, offering clients leading asset management services, and provides BlackRock with access to our extensive network in Mexico.”

Citibanamex provides wealth management products and services to more than 20 million clients through its 1,500 branches in Mexico.

BlackRock’s business in Mexico currently focuses mostly on institutional clients, offering international investment and risk management products and services across asset classes, strategies and geographies.