A Midwestern life insurer has agreed to acquire an old-line money manager.

Ameriprise Financial Inc., Minneapolis, has agreed to pay $440 million in cash for J. & W. Seligman & Company Inc., New York, a privately held asset management firm founded in 1864.

Seligman manages about $18 billion in assets in mutual funds, hedge funds and institutional accounts.

Ameriprise hopes to complete the deal by Dec. 31, the company says.

Ameriprise says it hopes to profit from the addition of Seligman’s $3 billion hedge fund operation and its highly regarded investment management and research operations.

“This transaction reinforces our growth strategy, and in particular our efforts to grow our higher-margin businesses,” Ameriprise Chairman Jim Cracchiolo says in a statement. “We are committed to prudent use of our capital, and we will continue to maintain strong capital and liquidity positions once this acquisition closes.”

UBS Investment Bank, New York, acted as a financial advisor for Ameriprise in connection with the deal.

Ameriprise has about $1 billion in cash and will use some of that cash to pay for Seligman, according to securities analysts at the UBS research arm.

Ameriprise now has relationships with 22 wholesalers, and the Seligman deal would add 14 more wholesaler relationships, the analysts write in a commentary.

Seligman’s investment management expertise also could help Ameriprise, the UBS analysts write.

The contract “contains provisions to ensure retention of key talent,” the analysts report.