Kiwoom Asset Management is close to a takeover of Franklin Templeton Trust Management, industry sources said Oct. 25.
Since Samsung Active Asset Management dropped its plans to create new joint venture Samsung Franklin Templeton in South Korea in August, 17 months after the two parties signed an agreement, Franklin has been looking for a new buyer.
Originally, Kiwoom was considering whether to acquire fund assets from Templeton, which asked for a full takeover. Industry sources said the asset management firm, which entered Korea in 1997, is seeking to completely withdraw from the country.
A Kiwoom official acknowledged that it was currently conducting due diligence but said nothing had been decided. Another official said Kiwoom was likely to make a final decision in mid-November.
The assets under management by Franklin Templeton reached 1.8 trillion won (US$1.53 million), according to the Korea Financial Investment Association, while those of the country’s eighth-largest asset manager, Kiwoom, stood at 44 trillion won.
The deal between Samsung and Templeton collapsed after the country’s financial authorities slapped the company with “institutional sanctions” in April and fined it 50 million won for failing to immediately inform investors that two portfolio companies had been liquidated.
By Park Ga-young (firstname.lastname@example.org)