Aberdeen Asset Management expects to move into exclusive negotiations with one company over the sale...
Aberdeen Asset Management expects to move into exclusive negotiations with one company over the sale of Aberdeen Property Investors and complete the sale by June.
The group is in advanced negotiations with a handful of potential buyers and is confident the deal will be completed by the summer.
Aberdeen's interim accounts for the six months to 31 March reveal overall pre-tax profits were buoyed by the sale of six of its open-ended funds to New Star, coming in at £41.9m, up from £10.8m for the same period last year.
However, pre-tax profits excluding goodwill amortisation and exceptional items fell by 74.8% to £5.6m from £22.2m in the same period last year. Even so, the sale of the funds to New Star enabled Aberdeen to reduce its gearing ratio from 113% to 76%, or £174m. Cost savings of £40m have also been realised, close to the group's £45m target.
Moreover, Aberdeen claims to be enjoying moderate net inflows into its offshore UK and European open-ended funds after a period of heavy redemptions across its range.
The group's total assets under management have fallen 15.5% over the six months to 31 March, from £23.6bn to £19.97bn. This is primarily due to the sale of the funds to New Star, market movements and the loss of the £70m Real Estate Opportunities split-cap investment trust mandate, over which Aberdeen is preparing legal action against the board for alleged illegal termination of contract.
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