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Julius Baer strengthens its long-term position in Italy and forms strategic partnership with Kairos – new private bank to be set up jointly




Julius Baer, the leading Swiss private banking group, and Milanbased Kairos Investment Management SpA (‘Kairos’) today announced that they have reached an agreement for a cooperation to jointly create a leading onshore wealth management player in Italy. Julius Baer’s Italian SIM will be integrated into Kairos and, simultaneously, Julius Baer will acquire 19.9% of Kairos. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to close in the first half of 2013. Secondly, subject to regulatory approval, the parties have also agreed to set up a new private bank in Italy by separately applying for a banking licence after the closing of this transaction. All Italian wealth management activities of the two groups will be run under the name Kairos Julius Baer. The transaction, the terms of which have not been disclosed, will significantly strengthen Julius Baer’s long-term position in Italy.

Kairos is a leading independent wealth manager in Italy with approximately Euro 4.5 billion of assets under management. It has enjoyed a very strong development over the last twelve years and has become one of the most important independent brands for wealth management in Italy. The company, which employs a total staff of 115, was established in 1999 as a partnership. Similar to Julius Baer, Kairos is specialised in discretionary portfolio management focusing on high-net-worth individuals, fully dedicated to offering best-in-class investment solutions and advice, which makes it a particularly good cultural fit.

Both parties together will decide on a future increase of Julius Baer’s strategic participation after a few years. With this transaction Julius Baer underlines its clear strategic intention to build a leading dedicated wealth management business in Italy in partnership with Kairos. Julius Baer Fiduciaria S.r.l. is not part of this transaction and will remain a wholly-owned subsidiary of Julius Baer.

Paolo Basilico, President and CEO of Kairos, and his partners will run the business of Kairos Julius Baer with the same team and pursuing the same client-centric strategy. Julius Baer will be represented on the Board of Directors with two designated members, Fabrizio Rindi, Chairman of Julius Baer SIM, and Loris Vallone, Head Business Development Region Italy. The Julius Baer SIM staff will be transferred to the new entity. Giovanni Flury, Head Region Italy and Ticino, and Marco Mazzucchelli, Senior Advisor, will represent Julius Baer on the Board of Kairos Investment Management SpA, the holding company.

Both parties are confident that the future close cooperation will bring additional growth momentum for Kairos and will allow the creation of a truly focused wealth management entity in the Italian market.

Boris F.J. Collardi, CEO of Julius Baer, commented: “We are extremely pleased to enter into a partnership with Kairos. Thanks to our strategic participation, we will increase our presence in the domestic Italian wealth management market. We believe Kairos will bring know-how and reputation to our ambitious plans in the Italian private banking environment. This move underlines our commitment to further grow and develop our business in Italy.”

Paolo Basilico, founding partner of Kairos, added: “The combination of strengths of the two partners will result in a powerful force in the Italian private banking sector. Clients will find in Kairos Julius Baer the quality and the services that they require. I would also like to stress that both Kairos and Julius Baer are independent and have a pure wealth management business model, offering a compelling strategic fit.”