GLOBAL - The acquisition of UK fund management group Gartmore appears to be near at hand, with private equity firm Hellman & Friedman (Hellman) tipped to be putting up a final offer.
According to recent reports, Gartmore is under pressure to accept a £300m plus offer from US-based Hellman, believed to be the last bidder left in the auction.
The auction has now lasted three months. Within that period, Gartmore has seen the loss of Tim Callaghan and Adrian Darley, managers at the group’s European Growth and Focus funds.
Nationwide Mutual, US owner of Gartmore, put the manager on sale late in 2005, announcing it was considering its “strategic options”.
A spokesman for Gartmore said he could not confirm how close it was to a deal being struck but indicated that something would be happening very soon.
“Pen has not been put to paper as of yet,” he said.
By Daniel Flatt
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