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GIC joins Blackstone consortium buying stake in Thomson Reuters' financial, risk business

SINGAPORE sovereign wealth fund GIC has joined a Blackstone-led consortium that has taken a majority stake in the Financial and Risk (F&R) business of news group Thomson Reuters.

Under the partnership agreement, the Blackstone-led consortium will own 55 per cent of the equity in a new corporation created to hold the F&R business, in a stake valued at US$11 billion.

Thomson Reuters will retain a 45 per cent equity stake valued at US$9 billion, with the overall valuation of the F&R division at US$20 billion.

Its F&R is a data and financial technology platform that provides information and data analytics, enables financial transactions, and connects communities of trading, investment, financial and corporate professionals. It also provides regulatory and risk management solutions.

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The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2018.

The new F&R entity will enter into a 30-year contract for the exclusive rights to distribute Reuters News through all F&R products.

Reuters News will continue to remain a part of Thomson Reuters and will not be included in the assets being acquired. Reuters News will continue to have complete editorial independence from F&R and Thomson Reuters, as it does today, according to a joint statement by the consortium.

Choo Yong Cheen, chief investment officer of Private Equity at GIC, said: "As a long-term value investor, we believe this business transformation will enable F&R to focus on its core customer base and be in a strong position to continue delivering innovative products to the market."

Canson Capital Partners, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citigroup and JPMorgan are acting as financial advisers to the Blackstone-led consortium, and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett is acting as legal counsel. Dechert is acting as legal counsel to GIC.

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