Perella Weinberg Is Said to Weigh Asset Manager Split Before IPO

(Bloomberg) -- Perella Weinberg Partners, the boutique investment bank founded by Joe Perella and Peter Weinberg, is weighing separating its asset-management unit as it considers plans for a potential initial public offering, according to people familiar with the matter.

The asset-management unit, run by Tarek Abdel-Meguid and Aaron Hood, could seek to spin itself out of the parent company to its partners and management team, said one of the people. Perella Weinberg is considering a range of options and no final decisions have been made on a potential split or IPO, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private information.

A separation could help Perella Weinberg take its investment bank public and potentially achieve a higher valuation as an advisory firm rather than one with multiple divisions, the people said. Rival firm Lazard Ltd. has both businesses and trades at about 6.3 times its book value. Evercore Inc., which is mostly focused on investment banking, trades at almost eight times that measure.

A representative for Perella Weinberg declined to comment.

Perella Weinberg’s asset manager has about $13.5 billion under management, compared with less than $4 billion at the end of 2008. Its strategies include global macro, growth equity and energy investments. That practice was helped by a 2016 merger with Tudor Pickering Holt & Co. that also expanded its investment banking business into markets including Houston. The firm ended last year as the No. 25 adviser on mergers and acquisitions, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Meguid and Hood are Morgan Stanley veterans who joined Perella Weinberg in 2006 when it was founded by their colleague Perella and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. veteran Weinberg, who also spent time at Morgan Stanley. While the business has grown in recent years, managers have long sought bigger scale. The business has had some turnover including the departure of fund managers in 2015 and the shuttering of a hedge fund a year earlier.

More recently, Perella Weinberg raised $750 million last year for it second private equity fund, part of the business run by David Ferguson and Chip Baird. It has also been boosting a business that provides outsourced investing solutions for endowments and foundations run by Chris Bittman and added resources to boost the macro fund business where Maria Vassalou oversees the portfolio.

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