UPDATE: AllianceBernstein (AB) to Acquire RASL

August 31, 2016 4:23 PM EDT

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(Updated - September 1, 2016 9:55 AM EDT)

(Update corrects headline to indicate acquisition of RASL, not Ramius)

AllianceBernstein L.P. (NYSE: AB) announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire RASL, which is jointly owned by Ramius LLC (the investment division of Cowen Group, Inc. [NASDAQ: COWN]) and the two principals of RASL, Stuart Davies and Vikas Kapoor. With more than $3 billion in assets under management as of July 1, 2016, RASL offers a range of customized alternative investment and advisory solutions to a global institutional client base. These solutions provide access to return sources that can complement an investor's existing alternative strategy, and offer the benefits of improved liquidity, reduced cost and greater transparency to overall portfolio construction. The acquisition adds new investment capabilities in factor-based and Alternative Risk Premia solutions to AB and expands the firm's offerings in the multi-asset and alternatives investment space. Stuart Davies and Vikas Kapoor will join AB, along with investment and support team members of RASL.

"The RASL acquisition represents a natural extension of our factor completion strategies for multi-manager equity portfolios," said Vadim Zlotnikov, Co-Head of Multi-Asset Solutions at AB. "They bring an excellent reputation among the most sophisticated institutional investors for their ability to construct and manage a wide range of alternative investment solutions utilizing alternative risk premia and other factors based investments. And they share AB's investment discipline and cultural mindset: research-driven, solutions-oriented, accountable and client-focused."

Stuart Davies, Co-CEO of RASL, added, "We are very excited to join AB, a firm with a history of research excellence, and impressive global distribution capabilities and robust infrastructure that will enhance our ability to continue developing customized alternative solutions that meet the complex investment needs institutional clients face today."

"As Ramius continues to expand its platform of single strategy offerings, the RASL team deserves the opportunity to join a platform that will allow them to continue to build their specialized offering in alternatives portfolio construction and optimization," said Thomas Strauss, Chairman of Ramius. "We are proud to have helped develop and scale the RASL team and we are extremely pleased to see that this business has found a home within a quality firm like AB."

Freeman & Co. acted as exclusive financial advisor to RASL and Cowen Group, Inc. Ropes & Gray acted as counsel to Cowen Group and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz acted as counsel to AB.

The closing is expected to occur by September 30, 2016 and is subject to customary closing conditions.



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