Bunge Plans to ‘Significantly’ Reduce Asset-Management Business

Bunge Ltd., a global agricultural-commodity trader, has decided to “significantly scale down” its asset-management unit, including its Climate Change Capital subsidiary, as it seeks to boost returns from core businesses.

Bunge will “focus more on partnerships with industrial and strategic financial investors,” Susan Burns, a spokeswoman for the White Plains, New York-based company, said in an e-mail. “As a consequence, we will no longer require an arm’s length asset-management platform, as any new third-party investments will be managed by our appropriate operating companies on a bespoke basis.”

Bunge plans to close all its regulated activities when the “right opportunity presents itself,” Burns said. The company didn’t respond to a request for information about the size of its asset-management business.

Since Soren Schroder became chief executive officer in June 2013, Bunge has undertaken a review of its companywide portfolio to improve returns, including exploring various options for its sugar-cane unit in Brazil.

Bunge bought London-based Climate Change Capital for an undisclosed amount in 2012. Bunge made the deal to help its financial-services group, which had been a trader of carbon credits and an adviser to other market participants, build a bigger presence in sustainability markets and advisory services.

The process of scaling back Climate Change Capital has already begun. In July 2014, Climate Change Capital announced that the management of its property fund would move to Impax Asset Management Ltd. The fund was set up in 2008 to buy U.K. commercial buildings and work with occupants to improve resource efficiency.

Last month, the firm’s private equity fund management team said it was spinning out to form Adaxia Capital Partners LLP.

Climate Change Capital Chairman James Cameron said in an e-mail last week that he will step down at the end of this month.

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