Desjardins complex

A group of senior managers and board members of Fiera Capital Corp. have bought back all of the company’s shares previously owned by Desjardins Financial Holding Inc.

In April, Desjardins informed Fiera Capital that it intended to divest all its shares in Fiera Capital L.P. and Fiera Holdings Inc.

Fiera unitholders were given first right of refusal. The transaction, which represents 6.8% of the total outstanding shares, is valued at $53 million.

Part of the purchase was financed by a $20-million credit facility made available by a Canadian bank to a company incorporated by senior management. Another $14 million came from Fiera founder Jean-Guy Desjardins, who bought shares.

In a release, the two organizations emphasized Friday that their business relationship remains despite the share buyback.

“Desjardins has been a supportive and valued partner since our inception, backing us over the last two decades,” said Jean-Guy Desjardins, chairman of Fiera’s board and its global CEO. “Despite the repurchase of shares, Desjardins continues to be a valued client, and we look back with satisfaction on our successful partnership.”

“This transaction is in line with our investment strategy. Fiera Capital remains an important business partner for Desjardins. We will continue our business relationship with Fiera, particularly in the management of our trust funds,” said Guy Cormier, president and CEO of Desjardins Group.

Desjardins was an early partner of Fiera. In 2003, Desjardins sold its majority interest in Elantis to Jean-Guy Desjardins, which enabled him to relaunch his business after selling TAL Global Asset Management to CIBC.