ABN Amro Asset Management’s eight-person Australian equities team under George Clapham is close to finalising a deal under which it will own 60 per cent of a spun-out business.

As the merger of Fortis Investments and ABN Amro AM proceeds globally, Clapham’s team (which currently manages $5.5 billion in Australian equities) will become known as Fortis Investment Partners. Current ABN Amro AM Australia chief executive, Ian Manton-Hall, will head an entity renamed Fortis Investments Australia, which will ‘own’ the Australian equity clients and continue to perform sales, client service and operations. The three fund managers to receive the most equity are Clapham, senior analyst Mark Nathan and senior portfolio manager Neil Boyd-Clark, however all eight analysts, portfolio managers and dealers in the team will receive an allocation. Manton-Hall said a final shareholder and delegation agreement would be signed with the Australian equities team by the end of the first quarter. “;We believe that this new arrangement further strengthens the alignment of interests between the company, the investment team and our clients,”; he said.