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AMG to Acquire Majority Stake in Parnassus; Shares Pop 7%

Affiliated Managers Group, Inc. (AMG) inked a deal to acquire a majority equity stake in Parnassus Investments, the largest pure-play ESG-dedicated fund manager in the U.S. Shares of AMG popped 6.9% to close at $166.80 on July 6.

AMG acts as a partner to independent, active investment management firms globally. As of March 31, 2021, AMG’s assets under management were approximately $738 billion. (See Affiliated Managers Group stock chart on TipRanks)

The partnership with Parnassus will bring AMG’s ESG dedicated AUM to approximately $80 billion, and AUM incorporating ESG factors into the investment process to approximately $600 billion.

Furthermore, key Parnassus leaders Benjamin Allen and Todd Ahlsten will enter into long-term employment agreements with the firm.

AMG is renowned for allowing full operational and investment autonomy to its affiliates, and Parnassus also will benefit from the same.  

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, though AMG did mention that the deal will be funded with existing corporate resources. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2021, subject to certain closing conditions.

Jay C. Horgen, President, and CEO of AMG said, “For nearly four decades, and across numerous market cycles, Parnassus has integrated fundamental financial and ESG research with the goal of achieving attractive risk-adjusted returns for its clients… AMG’s partnership with Parnassus further enhances our strategic participation in ESG investing, one of the fastest-growing segments in the investment industry, and an area of increasingly significant focus for clients globally.”

The deal is expected to contribute around $70 million to AMG’s adjusted EBITDA, and $1.30 per share to its Economic earnings in 2022.

Following the news, Barrington analyst Alexander Paris reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and lifted the price target to $190 (13.9% upside potential) from $180.

Paris believes that AMG has “accelerating growth ahead, driven by strong Affiliate performance, organic growth in client cash flows, new Affiliate investments (including that of Parnassus) and share repurchases.”

The stock has an overall Moderate Buy consensus rating based on 2 Buys and 4 Holds. The average Affiliated Managers Group price target of $171.50 implies 2.8% upside potential to current levels. Shares have gained 130% over the past year.

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