NU Online News Service, May 6, 4:23 p.m. – Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company, Springfield, Mass., says David L. Babson & Company Inc., one of its investment management subsidiaries, has agreed to acquire First Union Institutional Debt Management from Wachovia Corp., Charlotte, N.C.

First Union Institutional Debt manages a $3.7 billion portfolio of “leveraged loans.”

Babson hopes to complete the deal by June 30.

The value of the deal and other terms were not disclosed.

Completing the acquisition would make Babson one of the largest U.S. managers of leveraged loan assets, MassMutual says.

Babson plans to combine the First Union unit with its own operations, but it says it also plans to keep the 4-year-old unit’s loan management offices in Charlotte as well as other loan management offices in Springfield and New York.