Waddell & Reed Financial announced yesterday it will purchase Securian Financial Group’s subsidiary Advantus Capital Management, which has $2.1 billion in assets under management in the Advantus Funds and the Advantus Series Fund, Inc., a family of funds used as subaccounts in annuities and insurance. Those funds are included in products managed by Minnesota Life Insurance Company, another Securian subsidiary.

The purchase price is $26 million. The assets will transition to Waddell over a period of six months.

As part of the deal, Wadell & Reed plans to merge Advantus’ $150 million in assets in qualified separate accounts into its newly acquired Ivy Funds.

Keith A. Tucker, chairman and chief executive officer of Waddell & Reed Financial, Inc., said the acquisition was part of the firm’s efforts to expand its distribution.

Also yesterday, Waddell reported sharply lower first-quarter net earnings of $1.6 million, down from $24.8 million in the first quarter of 2002. The firm said that excluding equity compensation, whereby it spent $27.7 million to buy back certain stock options in exchange for restricted stock, first quarter results would have been $19.2 million.

Subscribe Now

Access to premium content including in-depth coverage of mutual funds, hedge funds, 401(K)s, 529 plans, and more.

3-Week Free Trial

Insight and analysis into the management, marketing, operations and technology of the asset management industry.