First Eagle picks Munich to establish European office
US asset management firm First Eagle Investment Management, managing $101bn as of 30 June 2020, is set to open a branch in Munich, Germany, by year-end. The German subsidiary will serve international wholesale clients in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) as well as in other non-US domiciles. It will encompass the management of the distribution partnership with French asset manager Amundi.
“First Eagle traces its origin to Germany, and we are excited to reestablish our local presence there after an absence of more than 80 years,” said Mehdi Mahmud, president and CEO of First Eagle. The US investment firm is the heir of an entity born of the merger of two German banks, Berlin-based S. Bleichroeder, founded in 1803, and Dresden-based Gebr. Arnhold, founded in 1864.
The Munich office will be led by ex-Pimco managing director EMEA Matthieu Louanges, who joined First Eagle on 3 August as head of its international wholesale business. Louanges will be based in Munich in preparation for the official opening of First Eagle’s office there, the firm specified in a statement. It is understood that Louanges and his team will be split between Munich and New York. Furthermore, Louanges will join First Eagle's management committee. He will be the first non-US based member of the firm's management committee.
At Pimco, Louanges most recently headed the firm’s global relationship with parent company Allianz. He had launched the company’s EMEA insurance channel and had had broad oversight responsibility for Pimco's business in Switzerland and France as well as its EMEA client solutions team. Louanges succeeds Robert Hackney, Jr. who will assist in the transition of his leadership of the international wholesale distribution business to Louanges and then become an adviser to Mahmud and the firm’s leadership team on strategic initiatives.