SYDNEY, March 18 Macquarie Group Ltd, Australia's top investment bank, has agreed to sell its private equity funds management division to the unit's three managers, a source with direct knowledge of the deal told Reuters on Tuesday.
The company agreed to sell Macquarie Investment Management Private Markets, which has funds of around A$5 billion ($4.55 billion) largely invested in and around Australia, to managers Michael Lukin, Andrew Savage and Shaw Ng, said the source, who was not authorised to comment publicly on the matter.
Representatives of the funds management division were not immediately available to comment on the sale.
Large investment banks like Macquarie are shifting away from riskier exposures to focus on more reliable, annuities-style investments. Last August, Credit Suisse Group AG sold its Customised Fund Investment Group to Grosvenor Capital Management LP.
Macquarie agreed to offload the private equity unit, which has about 20 staff, because it decided it could better meet the demands of private equity investors without the constraints of a large investment bank, the source said.
The investment bank will not disclose a sale price and does not consider it large enough to report to the Australian Stock Exchange, the source said.
($1 = 1.0999 Australian Dollars) (Reporting by Byron Kaye; Editing by Stephen Coates)