By Kimberly Chin 

BlackRock Inc. has agreed to acquire equity-index provider Aperio Group LLC from private-equity firm Golden Gate Capital and Aperio employees in a $1.05 billion all-cash deal, as the company looks to add more personalization to its wealth management offerings.

BlackRock, one of the leading providers of separately managed accounts--professionally managed portfolios created for a single client rather than managed as a fund for many investors -- for U.S. wealth managers, said the combination will help increase its SMA assets by about 30% to over $160 billion.

The world's largest money manager -- with $7.8 trillion in assets -- said it intends to operate Aperio as a separate brand, but it will be fully embedded within BlackRock's U.S. Wealth Advisory unit.

Aperio's Chief Investment Officer Ran Leshem and Liz Michaels, its chief of staff, will become co-heads of Aperio following the deal, and will retain its investment, business development, client service and ESG processes, the company said.

Aperio's Chief Executive Officer Patrick Geddes will stay in his role as the company's chief tax economist and will become a senior adviser at BlackRock.

Aperio provides wealth managers with tax-optimized, equity-index SMAs, as well as individually tailored environmental, social and governance portfolios, BlackRock said. The Sausalito, Calif., company targets an audience of ultrahigh-net-worth investors and institutions, as well as the independent registered investment advisor market.

The transaction will be financed by the company's existing liquidity.

BlackRock expects the deal to close in the first quarter of 2021.

Write to Kimberly Chin at kimberly.chin@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 23, 2020 18:37 ET (23:37 GMT)

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