Invesco CEO Marty Flanagan has said that the investment management company has not had any talks to merge with or acquire Janus Henderson hours after adding three people to its board, including two from activist fund Trian Partners, which has pushed for consolidation in the industry.
“There’s been no suggestion by Trian, or ourselves, or Janus, that there’s interest in a tie-up,” Flanagan said in an interview with Barron’s. “That’s speculation in the marketplace.”
Flanagan suggested his focus will be on outgrowing with rival active managers, not buying them. “Our first port of call is to look internally and grow organically,” he said.
Rumors of a potential merger of the two gained traction after Trian took a nearly 10% stake in each company in October.
Trian Partners’ Nelson Peltz and Ed Garden were added to the board earlier Thursday as was Thomas Finke, the CEO of asset manager Barings, who is set to retire at the end of November. The board will grow from nine to 12 members as a result of the new additions.
“We look forward to working with Marty and his leadership team and Rick and the Invesco board to help Invesco create significant long-term value for all Invesco stakeholders,” Peltz said in a statement. “We believe deeply in Invesco’s ability to be a winner in the fast-changing asset management industry through growth, innovation and strong capital allocation.”
Peltz recently indicated in an interview at a conference that consolidation is needed in the active management industry to compete with passive asset managers such as BlackRock and said that Janus and Invesco should seek out an opportunity to merge.
Peltz has been investing for years in asset management companies. Most recently, Legg Mason, a company where he and Ed Garden sat on the board, sold itself to Franklin Resources in August.
Shares in Invesco gained nearly 5% in trading Thursday, after falling 1.6% on Wednesday, while Janus Henderson closed up 2.9%