Investment Product and Service Launches

Allianz Global adds PFaroe for DB plan investment reporting, and Morningstar acquisition expands fixed-income analysis.

Art by Jackson Epstein

Art by Jackson Epstein

Allianz Global Adds PFaroe for DB Plan Investment Reporting 

Allianz Global Investors has adopted PFaroe to deliver analytical and reporting capabilities to defined benefit (DB) pension plans in the U.S. market. PFaroe’s analytics are said to allow AllianzGI to further enhance its asset allocation expertise. 

Adopting PFaroe allows AllianzGI to scale its business operations for its fixed income capabilities in the U.S. market. The tool will be utilized by the U.S. Financial Institutions Group (FIG) led by Andy Wilmot and the firm’s liability-driven investment (LDI) team, overseen by Carl Pappo, CIO, U.S. Fixed Income, and Frank Salem, senior portfolio manager on U.S. Fixed Income.

Andy Wilmot, head of U.S. FIG, comments, “As a long-time player in the DB market, we are constantly looking for ways to further the depth and breadth of our capabilities. The adoption of PFaroe’s analytics will support our next phase of fixed income growth in the U.S. by bringing the US LDI strategy down market into the adviser-led space.”

Matthew Seymour, CEO, RiskFirst, adds, “We are delighted that AllianzGI has chosen PFaroe as the tool for taking their business forward; helping them to win new clients and build upon their existing strength in the market. Having such a major name use our technology is another significant step for us in the U.S. market, as we continue to establish PFaroe as the go-to for U.S. asset owners, consultants and asset managers.”

Morningstar Acquisition Expands Fixed-Income Analysis

Morningstar, Inc. has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire DBRS, the world’s fourth-largest credit ratings agency, for a purchase price of $669 million. The combination of DBRS with Morningstar Credit Ratings’ U.S. business will expand global asset class coverage and provide a platform for providing investors with fixed-income analysis and research.

“The chance to empower investors with the independent research and opinions they need across a multitude of securities first drove our decision to enter the credit ratings business,” says Morningstar chief executive officer Kunal Kapoor. “DBRS and Morningstar share research-centric cultures committed to rigor and independence. Together, we believe we can elevate the industry with the world’s first fintech ratings agency backed by state-of-the-art models, modern technology, and expert research teams that issuers and investors can count on to deliver transparent and independent ratings.”

“DBRS’s more than 40 years of experience and success coupled with Morningstar’s proven capabilities will offer an even stronger global alternative to larger ratings agencies,” says DBRS chief executive officer Stephen Joynt. “Both DBRS and Morningstar are driven by similar core values that aim to bring more clarity, diversity, transparency, and responsiveness to the ratings process, which makes Morningstar a perfect fit for us.”

DBRS has more than 500 employees spread across seven locations and will continue to be led by its existing management team. Morningstar intends to name a leader of the combined businesses by the time the deal closes, and the companies plan to work together on decisions over time regarding the integration to ensure the combination is set up for long-term success.

The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2019, subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.