Frankfurt, May 26 2021

Universal-Investment completes acquisition of Metzler Ireland

Universal-Investment Group will complete the acquisition of the Irish fund management company Metzler Ireland Limited by 31st May 2021 following the recent approval of the acquisition by the Irish financial regulator, the Central Bank of Ireland. The new group company, which will trade as Universal-Investment Ireland, will be the Group's third ManCo and fund service hub, alongside Luxembourg and Germany. The Group is fully committed to the Irish market and will maintain and develop the significant level of substance currently existing in the Dublin-based company by bringing in more expertise and people as the business grows.

Keith Milne will remain Chief Executive Officer of the company and will serve as Country Head of Universal-Investment Ireland. He comments: “We are united by our pioneering spirit. Metzler Ireland was one of the first ManCos in Ireland. Universal-Investment, in turn, were similar pioneers in Germany and Luxembourg. With the combination of our long-standing Irish heritage and experienced team, supported by the powerful open architecture platform built by Universal-Investment in Germany, where assets with a volume of more than EUR 660 billion are serviced, we will be able to offer our clients the best possible service as a SuperManCo for Irish domiciled funds.”

Michael Reinhard, CEO of Universal-Investment adds: “We’re delighted that we will be completing the acquisition of our new Irish member of the Group. We aim to become the leading European ManCo and fund service platform for all asset classes and this means that being present in the growing Irish funds hub is absolutely essential for us. We plan to invest in the experienced local team to support their needs. The Irish operation will also be able to leverage the support of both, our staff of more than 1,000 experts and our innovative technical infrastructure which provides a strong backbone to all clients.”

Metzler will remain the initiator of its Irish funds and will continue to use its former fund platform. Gerhard Wiesheu, the Metzler partner responsible for the Asset Management, comments: “The funds set up by Metzler in Ireland will still be managed and distributed by us, so our customers will not feel any difference. The PLC corporate form of our funds launched in Ireland means that their administration can be handled by the Universal-Investment Group. Our former sister company is still ManCo and will manage the Metzler funds as white label funds for us.” Metzler will remain active as a capital management company in Germany and will continue to offer high-quality asset management solutions for discerning institutional investors.

Universal-Investment Group, founded in 1968, is headquartered in Frankfurt, Germany and has been active in the Luxembourg market for more than two decades. As one of the pioneers of the funds industry in Germany, it launched its first white label fund back in 1972 and disrupted the German institutional assets industry in the 1990s by introducing the separation of asset management and administration. In 2019, Universal-Investment Group acquired fintech UI Labs which offers front office solutions and data management services for the asset management industry. In 2020, Universal-Investment acquired the fintech and online investment community CAPinside, a matchmaker between asset managers and investors. Also, in 2020 it established UI Enlyte as one of the first investment platforms for digital assets worldwide. Currently, the company has entered into a cooperation with fintech YUKKA lab to develop ESG sentiment analysis based on Artificial Intelligence.

For many years, Ireland has established itself as one of the leading locations for the funds industry in Europe. The third-party ManCo segment, in particular, is growing significantly there. Universal-Investment Group, which is already the biggest third-party ManCo provider in Germany and Luxembourg, will be expanding its new platform and range of services in Ireland, making it one of the few providers that is active as a management company at the three largest fund hubs in Europe. As an Irish platform is particularly attractive to UK and North American asset managers, the acquisition was a logical next step in Universal-Investment's drive to establish an even stronger international presence. Through its unique and comprehensive ManCo and fund service offering locally and within the group (for example, active distribution solutions), Universal-Investment Ireland is aiming to become a substantial local player in all asset classes in the years ahead.

Metzler Ireland was a sister company of the Frankfurt bank B. Metzler seel. Sohn & Co. KGaA, the oldest German private bank in uninterrupted family ownership. Metzler Ireland employs around 20 people and has assets of over EUR 3 billion.

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Approval by the Central Bank of Ireland has been granted

Expansion of Universal-Investment’s platform for international customers has been accelerated

Clients will profit from a unique range of services from ManCo to administration to active distribution

Keith Milne, Country Head of Universal-Investment Ireland

Bernd Obergfell

Head of Communications

+49 69 71043-575


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