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MetLife (MET) Eyes ESG Investment Manager AIM Acquisition

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MetLife, Inc.’s (MET - Free Report) institutional asset management business, MetLife Investment Management or MIM, recently agreed to acquire Affirmative Investment Management (“AIM”) to increase its environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) offerings. The $1 billion London-based acquiree is a fixed income manager and focuses on impact investing.

MIM had $590.9 billion in total assets under management at the second quarter-end, while Affirmative Investment Management had a little over $1 billion. The latest acquisition will likely advance MET’s capabilities to deliver long-term risk-adjusted returns to clients while enhancing ESG investment and reporting portfolio. The financial terms of the deal are yet to be disclosed.

This acquisition marks the latest one in the drive of acquiring ESG investment and consulting firms by major asset managers to meet sustainability-related demands from clients. MetLife is expected to benefit from the buyout of Affirmative Investment Management, which offers single currency, multi-currency and liquid impact bonds. The deal is expected to provide the acquiree access to huge institutional investment capacity.

MetLife resorts to acquisitions and partnerships for strengthening its capabilities and global presence. These acquisitions will lead to business diversification and inorganic growth for the company. This February, it forged an alliance with Aura to safeguard the digital identity of employees. It also acquired Versant Health, which immediately made it the third-largest vision care provider in the United States.

The acquisition positioned the business for double-digit adjusted PFO growth. The company has also forayed into the pet insurance space with the buyout of PetFirst.

Price Performance

MetLife’s shares have increased 5.5% in the past year, outperforming the 14.7% decline of the industry.

Zacks Investment Research
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Zacks Rank & Key Picks

MetLifecurrently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the broader finance space are Ares Capital Corporation (ARCC - Free Report) , Mr. Cooper Group Inc. (COOP - Free Report) and EZCORP, Inc. (EZPW - Free Report) , each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Based in Los Angeles, CA, Ares Capital specializes in rescue financing of middle-market companies. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for ARCC’s 2022 earnings indicates 15.1% year-over-year growth.

Headquartered in Coppell, TX, Mr. Cooper Group offers transaction-based services. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for Mr. Cooper Group’s 2022 bottom line has witnessed one upward estimate revision in the past 30 days against none in the opposite direction.

Austin, TX-based EZCORP works as a pawn loan provider in the U.S. and Latin America. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for EZPW’s 2022 bottom line indicates 94.7% year-over-year growth.

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