Asteria Investment Managers, the impact investing affiliate of REYL & Cie, has forged a strategic alliance with Swiss impact private asset manager Obviam.

The two companies will combine to form a ‘prominent player’ in the impact investing space, with over CHF1bn ($1.1bn) in assets under management.

Financial terms of the deal were not revealed.

The deal is said to build on Asteria’s core strategic plan devised upon its establishment last year.

Moreover, Obviam‘s private equity know-how is seen as a strong complement to Asteria’s liquid markets and private debt expertise.

Asteria Obviam – The unified entity

The merger will see Asteria head Katia Coudray become CEO of the combined entity, which will operate as Asteria Obviam.

This unified business will focus on intentional impact investing, with the aim of driving environmental and social progress across a full range of impact strategies.

It is also expected to deliver cross-benefits from its consolidated distribution network and technology platform utilising Big Data and Machine Learning.

Coudray said: “This new entity is reinforcing the Swiss Financial Place for Sustainable Investing, allowing to build bridges between the various impact segments and to intensify the collaboration within public and private sector around sustainability.”

Following the deal, the Obviam team will continue to be under the leadership of its founder and CEO Claude Barras. They will remain located in Bern.

According to Barras, the merger will allow Obviam to build on its aim of delivering “strong investment returns” for its clients and “investing profitably” to support people in developing and emerging markets.

He said: “Our combined expertise and aligned interests open doors to achieve an even greater level of impact for society by building on our track record to attract additional funds from the private sector.”

Continued support from REYL

The combined business, Asteria Obviam, will have the continued support from REYL which recently inked a strategic partnership with Fideuram – Intesa Sanpaolo Private Banking.

REYL & Cie CEO Francois Reyl said: “With this transaction, we aim not only to demonstrate our firm optimism in this asset class in words but, more importantly, to translate our engagement through action.

“We believe that this combined entity will be able to offer the opportunities that clients are increasingly requesting through a more inclusive and truly impactful way of investing.”