PARIS (Reuters) - Private equity firm Warburg Pincus has completed a deal to buy a 49 percent stake in Chinese asset management company Fortune SG from French bank Societe Generale (SOGN.PA), the companies said on Monday.
People familiar with the matter had told Reuters last year that SocGen was selling the stake - a mutual fund joint venture with China’s Baosteel Group - to Warburg Pincus.
SocGen, France’s second-biggest listed bank, was among the first foreign companies to enter the Chinese mutual fund business when the authorities first opened the market up to foreign investors. In 2003, it teamed up with state-owned Baosteel Group, which operates China’s second-largest steelmaker, to create joint venture Fortune SG Fund Management.
But cut-throat competition from Chinese firms has led SocGen to rethink its presence in the country and comes after a string of foreign institutions, including Bank of New York Mellon Corp (BK.N), Aviva (AV.L) and Value Partners (0806.HK), sold their stakes in China mutual fund ventures.
Fortune SG manages around 122.5 billion Chinese RMB ($19 billion) of public equity assets.
Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Geert De Clercq