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Fund giant PGIM ramps up LatAm presence with Banchile deal

Fund giant PGIM ramps up LatAm presence with Banchile deal

Prudential’s global fund distribution business, PGIM Investments, is deepening its presence in Latin America by partnering with Banchile’s asset management arm to market the firm’s Ucits strategies, Citywire Americas can reveal.

The deal will see Banchile Administradora General de Fondos (AGF) market PGIM’s 26 Ucits funds as well as direct real estate strategies offered through PGIM Real Estate to Chilean investors.

While PGIM has a presence in Mexico through its real estate business, this is its first entry into Latin America via its Ucits capability. Its parent company, US-based Prudential Financial, also owns 40% of Chile’s largest pension fund, AFP Habitat.

Banchile AGF will distribute the US firm’s complete Ucits offering and real estate range across all channels, including the Chilean AFPs, private banks, family offices and insurance companies. 

Speaking to Citywire Americas, Kimberly LaPointe, executive vice president and head of global accounts for PGIM Investments: ‘We plan on offering our entire suite of Ucits through our partnership with Banchile […]. We do see demand where we have pockets of strength, asset classes like EMD and high yield where we have deep expertise through PGIM Fixed income.’

PGIM has a multi-manager approach with expertise across fixed income, equities and public real estate, and as of end of March the group had $1 trillion in assets under management of which $2.5 billion was on its Ucits platform.

LaPointe added that after a ‘meaningful due diligence and courting process’ the firm decided that Chile offered the most attractive cross-border fund market in Latin America and that Banchile was an ‘an ideal partner’ for this move.

Eduardo Beffermann, Banchile AGF CIO, said in a statement, ‘With PGIM we share many attributes, including reputational strength in the institutional marketplace, and a consistent focus on solutions to meet our clients’ needs, and we are also confident that we will share success in this new initiative.’

PGIM said it would continue to keep an eye on strategic opportunities in other Latin American countries, but for now it will remain focused on the partnership with Banchile.

‘Right now a really important part is establishing our brand in the market place, serving the local investors and understanding the needs of the local investor. We’re trying to step back and make that long term commitment to the market and we’re very focused on laying that foundation,’ said LaPointe.

Prudential launched its Ucits platform in 2013 in response to institutional and existing client demand and over the last two and half years has put an emphasis on increasing its international strategy.

In addition to distributing funds, Banchile ran 89 funds and $12 billion worth of assets as of December 2018. Beffermann was recently appointed as CIO after Pablo Valero Pastén, who stepped down in January after 14 years at the firm.

In June 2017, the Chilean firm also signed a distribution agreement with European group Edmond de Rothschild.

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