Fiera Rises on Deal to Buy National Bank Unit: Montreal Mover

Feb. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Fiera Sceptre Inc., a Montreal-based money manager, agreed to buy Natcan Investment Management from National Bank of Canada for C$309.5 million ($308.4 million) in cash and stock to increase assets under management. Fiera rose the most in 20 months.

Fiera advanced 18 percent to C$8.50 in Toronto trading, the stock’s biggest gain since June 16, 2010. National Bank fell less than 1 percent to C$76.55. Fiera will pay C$235 million when the deal is completed and another C$74.5 million “over time,” the company said today in a statement. National Bank will hold a 35 percent stake in the unit.

Fiera said the purchase from Canada’s sixth-largest bank will bring its assets to about C$54 billion. It will be the third-largest publicly-traded asset manager in Canada, Morgan Stanley analyst Cheryl Pate said today in a note to clients.

“Our goal is to quickly become a major player in the ranks of North American asset managers,” Fiera Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jean-Guy Desjardins said in the statement.

National Bank said the transaction will be “neutral” to its earnings.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sean B. Pasternak in Toronto at spasternak@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editors responsible for this story: David Scanlan at dscanlan@bloomberg.net; David Scheer at dscheer@bloomberg.net.