Legg Mason Acquires Rothschild's Singapore Unit

January 2, 2004 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Legg Mason is acquiring British bank Rothschild's Singapore asset management business.

The acquisition will add more than $1 billion worth of fixed income and equity assets to Legg Mason’s portfolio.   The Baltimore-based money manager will merge the Singapore unit into its Asian asset management subsidiary, according to a Reuters report.

Legg Mason’s Asian wing will now consist of the Western Asset Management Company.   The merged unit will be made up of the Rothschild acquisition in addition to Western Asset and Batterymarch Financial.

Rothschild has been dangling the Singapore unit since the United Kingdom-based bank decided to exit retail and institutional fund management in December 2002.   While the company held onto its Asian unity, Rothschild has previously sold its asset management business to British Bank HBOS Plc.

Even though terms of the transaction were not disclosed, Reuters reports that asset management firms are typically purchased for about 1% or less of their total funds managed.