Franklin Resources subsidiary Fiduciary Trust Co. International is acquiring Lincoln, Massachusetts-based RIA Athena Capital Advisors, which has assets under management of about $6 billion, according to the firms.
The merger transaction will expand Fiduciary Trust’s offerings, “further diversifying the firm’s investment solutions for meeting the evolving needs of high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth clients,” it said Tuesday.
The acquisition is expected to close by March 31, the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2020 for Franklin Resources, which operates as Franklin Templeton, it said. Once completed, Fiduciary Trust will have AUM of about $25 billion, it said. As of Sept. 30, the firm had $75 billion combined in AUM and assets under administration.
Once the deal is completed, “Athena professionals will be integrated into Fiduciary Trust,” according to John M. Dowd, Fiduciary Trust CEO. “The plan is to operate under a single brand — Fiduciary Trust” — going forward, he told ThinkAdvisor, adding: “Fiduciary recognizes that Athena has built a strong reputation in the impact investing space and will consider how to best leverage its brand name recognition when promoting our combined capabilities.”
Headcount reductions aren’t anticipated following the transaction, he also said. “The goal is to combine Athena with Fiduciary in a way that benefits everyone — employees, clients and shareholders — with as little disruption as possible,” he said, adding: “The two firms are working closely to finalize integration plans, which includes retaining the best talent across both firms. Most of Athena’s employees are based in Massachusetts, and there are no immediate plans for office relocations at this time. Athena professionals will be integrated into Fiduciary Trust and our immediate focus is the successful transition of employees into the organization. Staff working in Athena’s New York office will relocate to Fiduciary Trust’s headquarters at 280 Park Avenue. Athena will establish a market structure for Fiduciary Trust in Massachusetts.”
Athena has about 50 employees and, following the merger, the combined company will have a total of more than 450 employees, he said. The purchase price and other terms of the deal were not disclosed.