Unstructured Finance

Noted: Financial M&A drivers for 2010

Across the different bits of financial services – such as fund management, broker-dealers, insurance, and trading systems – mergers and acquisitions fell sharply in 2009. But Freeman & Co outlines 10 drivers that should make this a busier year for dealmaking:

“1. Banks and insurance companies continue to assess whether their asset management units
are core to their business, especially those that have stand alone brands or are in non-core

2. Large transformational asset management deals will diminish, but deals in the $3-30 billion
AUM range will increase from current lows

RAB fund still paying the price

RAB Capital’s struggling Special Situations fund looks to have recorded a positive return in 2009, but after a bumper year for the industry it is still paying the price for the investments it made in illiquid assets before the credit crisis.

RAB's Philip Richards. REUTERS/Nigel Roddis.

Having seen their investment lose around half its value in 2008 while much of the fund’s money was in hard-to-sell assets, the fund’s investors agreed in autumn ’08 to lock up their money for 3 years in return for a cut in fees.

Today’s update from the listed feeder fund shows a gain of 6.5 pct for the first 11 months of 2009, helped by a strong November.

DealZone Daily

British publisher Informa is in talks to buy its German rival Springer Science and Business Media from private equity firms Candover and Cinven, the FT says.

Informa initiated talks with Springer three weeks ago and is considering an all cash bid, according to its story, but private equity firms including Apax and EQT are still looking at the business.

For the latest deals news from Reuters, click here.

And here are the top stories from the newspapers (some external links may require subscription):