In late May 2011 it was announced that portions of Evaluation Associates will be acquired by Mercer Investment Consulting and Callan Associates in two separate transactions, with Callan set to buy Evaluation Associates' public sector investment consulting business. Mercer, which will be acquiring the majority of the firm, has reached an agreement with Milliman - Evaluation Associates’ parent company.
Originally founded in 1969 as a division of PaineWebber and launched as an independent investment consulting firm in 1976, Evaluation Associates specialized in full service investment consulting and has been active across a range of alternative asset types including private equity, real estate, hedge funds, as well as special situations strategies like infrastructure fund investments. Milliman, one of the largest actuarial and consulting firms in the US, bought Evaluation Associates in 2004, and up until this current acquisition Evaluation Associates operated as an independent subsidiary.
Several of Evaluation Associates’ clients are in the public sector, and with Mercer deciding in late 2010 to no longer operate in the US public space, Callan has stepped in and will be taking over Evaluation’s public consulting business. In doing so, Callan adds to its broad base of public sector clients. Although Mercer and Callan have tried and failed to merge in the past, by cooperating on this transaction, Mercer and Callan are able to pursue their separate strategic goals in the investment consulting market.
As of the time of the acquisition, Evaluation Associates had over 40 employees, and approximately $200 billion worth of assets under advisement with the majority of its clients based in North America.
Mercer’s portion of the acquisition is expected to be completed by the end of Q2 2011, but no terms have been disclosed. Upon completion, this will be Mercer’s second acquisition of an investment consulting firm in 2011, having completed its acquisition of Hammond Associates effective 3rd January 2011. The Evaluation Associates acquisition further strengthens Mercer’s investment consulting position in the US and its work in the wealth management segment complements the capabilities brought to Mercer by Hammond Associates.