January 31, 2008 05:01 ET

Fortis welcomes permission from DNB for demerger of ABN AMRO Asset Management

BRUSSEL, BELGIUM--(Marketwire - January 31, 2008) -

First milestone in separation and integration process

Fortis welcomes the permission from the Dutch central bank (DNB) concerning the proposed demerger of ABN AMRO Asset Management (AAAM) from ABN AMRO Bank. This demerger is expected to be completed at the end of Q1.

'We're on track', explains Fortis CEO Jean-Paul Votron. 'This is a major step forward and a key milestone in the integration process of the ABN AMRO activities that will join us. The subsequent combining of the two entities will see the formation of a world-class asset manager with an impressive solutions offering and a truly global footprint.'

Richard Wohanka, nominated CEO of the combined asset management entity said: 'I am delighted that the DNB has given its consent. This is the successful culmination of several months of diligent hard work and close cooperation between the two asset managers and the Dutch authorities. The formal separation of AAAM from the ABN AMRO group can now commence*, after which Fortis Investments can officially start the rapid and seamless integration of its business with that of AAAM.'

The combination of the two asset managers would create a top tier asset manager benefiting from a global geographic footprint (over 30 countries worldwide, over 2,000 employees, including 600 investment specialists in 40 investment centres) and enhanced offering to institutional clients and third-party distributors. The combined solutions offering is expected to reach top quartile position across many asset classes and achieve scale in core growth products.

*subject to consultation with the Works Council

Fortis is an international financial services provider engaged in banking and insurance. We offer our personal, business and institutional customers a comprehensive package of products and services through our own channels, in collaboration with intermediaries and through other distribution partners. With a market capitalisation of EUR 39.7 billion (31/12/2007), Fortis ranks among the 15 largest financial institutions in Europe. Our sound solvency position, our presence in over 50 countries and our dedicated, professional workforce of 60,000 enable us to combine global strength with local flexibility and provide our clients with optimum support. More information is available at

Fortis Investments is a multi-centre, multi-product asset management company. As the asset manager of Fortis, Fortis Investments has EUR 131 billion of assets under management* with over 50% of its revenues generated by third party clients. Based in Europe, the company has a global presence, with both sales offices and 21 dedicated investment centres in Europe, the USA and Asia. Fortis Investments offers international investment solutions, while meeting the requirements and needs of local investors, both institutional and wholesale retail. Employees number 1,053**, of whom 281** are dedicated investment specialists. Activities range from institutional portfolio management to the development and management of mutual funds, such as the Fortis L Fund, which currently has some 118 sub-funds. Fortis Investments is a client-driven organisation using a disciplined investment process to satisfy its clients' varied needs.

*All figures per end September 2007

** Includes the Chinese JV, Fortis Haitong and the Russian JV, KIT Fortis Investments

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