Conning and its Affiliates to be Acquired by Generali; Transaction Enhances Firms' Long-Term Growth Plans

July 06, 2023

  • Conning and its Affiliates Will Continue to Operate under Current Leadership and Brands
  • New Strategic Support Expected from Generali to Accelerate the Strategy for Conning and its Affiliates
  • Conning’s Partnership with Cathay Life to Continue



HARTFORD, CT – July 6, 2023 – Conning Holdings Limited (“Conning and its Affiliates1”), a leading global asset manager serving the needs of insurance company and institutional clients, today announced that it will be acquired by Generali Investment Holdings (“GIH”), an entity comprising the majority of asset management activities of Generali Group (“Generali”). Conning and its Affiliates will continue to execute their growth strategies with support from the firm’s current owner, Cathay Life Insurance Co. Ltd. (“Cathay”) and Generali. 


“This is a highly complementary business combination that presents exceptional long-term opportunities for Conning and our Affiliates – maintaining our firms’ ability to provide performance and service to our clients while extending our global investment capabilities,” said Woody Bradford, Chief Executive Officer and Chair of the Conning Holdings Limited Board. “We believe this transaction provides stability for our clients and employees, maintains continuity of leadership and strategy, and will generate new collaboration opportunities with Generali and its affiliates to strengthen both firms.”


As part of Generali Asset Management’s ecosystem of affiliates, Conning and its Affiliates will continue to operate autonomously under the current management teams, including the leadership of Woody Bradford.  Following the closing, Conning and its majority-controlled affiliates Octagon Credit Investors, LLC, Global Evolution Holding ApS, and Pearlmark Real Estate, L.L.C., are expected to receive on-going strategic support from Generali and Cathay, including additional assets to manage, collaboration on opportunities to seed new strategies, and the exploration of other potential investments to support growth in the business over time. Conning and its Affiliates will also benefit from regular interaction between the firms comprising Generali Asset Management to share best practices and leverage GIH’s shared operational and risk frameworks.


As part of the transaction, Cathay will enter into a partnership with Generali by contributing its ownership of Conning and its Affiliates in exchange for 16.75% ownership of GIH. In addition, Cathay has agreed to a minimum 10-year financial commitment in relation to specific insurance assets under management that will continue to be managed on its behalf by the Generali Asset Management businesses including Conning and its Affiliates.


Philippe Donnet, Group CEO of Generali, said: “Through the acquisition of Conning and its Affiliates, and the long-term partnership with Cathay Life, Generali will enhance its asset management capabilities, strengthen its footprint in the key U.S. and Asian markets, and create a platform to deliver on its broader asset management strategic ambitions in order to maximize value for all stakeholders, including Generali’s insurance business.”


“As a client and shareholder since 2011, Cathay has enjoyed a long and successful partnership with Conning,” said Hong-Tu Tsai, Chairman of Cathay Financial Holdings. “We are now very excited about continuing to remain involved as a shareholder in GIH and to work together with Generali to support the continued growth of Conning. We also look forward to seeking new opportunities for further collaboration, including in the Asia Pacific.”


The transaction is subject to customary regulatory review and is expected to close in the first half of 2024.


Broadhaven Capital Partners acted as financial advisor and Norton Rose Fulbright acted as legal advisor to Conning and its Affiliates and Cathay in relation to the transaction; Morgan Lewis advised Conning and its Affiliates on U.S. matters.


1 Conning, Inc., Octagon Credit Investors, LLC, Global Evolution Holding ApS and its group of companies, and Pearlmark Real Estate, L.L.C., Goodwin Capital Advisers, Inc., Conning Investment Products, Inc., a FINRA-registered broker-dealer, Conning Asset Management Limited, and Conning Asia Pacific Limited are all direct or indirect subsidiaries of Conning Holdings Limited which is one of the family of companies owned by Cathay Financial Holding Co., Ltd., a Taiwan-based company.


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ABOUT CONNING and its Affiliates

Conning ( and its Affiliates are a leading investment management firm with over $157 billion in global assets under management as of March 31, 2023.* With a long history of serving the insurance industry, the firm supports institutional investors, including insurers and pension plans, with investment solutions, risk modeling software, and industry research. Founded in 1912, Conning has investment centers in Asia, Europe and North America.   


* As of March 31, 2023, represents the combined global assets under management for the affiliated firms under Conning Holdings Limited (“CHL”). Note that the firm’s reported AUM since 2015 has included the assets of Cathay Securities Investment Trust Co., Ltd. (“SITE”). The CHL and SITE combined AUM is approximately $201 billion as of March 31, 2023.


Generali Group

Generali is one of the largest global insurance and asset management providers. Established in 1831, it is present in over 50 countries in the world, with a total premium income of € 81.5 billion in 2022. With 82,000 employees serving 68 million customers, the Group has a leading position in Europe and a growing presence in Asia and Latin America. At the heart of Generali’s strategy is its Lifetime Partner commitment to customers, achieved through innovative and personalised solutions, best-in-class customer experience and its digitalised global distribution capabilities. The Group has fully embedded sustainability into all strategic choices, with the aim to create value for all stakeholders while building a fairer and more resilient society.


Cathay Financial Holding Co., Ltd.

Cathay Financial Holding Co., Ltd. is one of the largest financial holding companies in Taiwan with total assets of US$392.8 billion at the end of 2022.  The company’s major subsidiaries include Cathay Life Insurance, Cathay United Bank, Cathay Century Insurance, Cathay Securities, Cathay Securities Investment Trust and Cathay Venture, serving collectively over 15.1 million customers through 691 business locations across Taiwan.  The company has also expanded its operations in the Asia-Pacific, including in China and Vietnam.  Cathay Life Insurance is the largest life insurance company in Taiwan.

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