Allianz has announced plans to merge Allianz Real Estate and PIMCO to create a €100bn-plus real estate investment manager, while AXA Investment Managers has also said it it combining its real assets, structured credit and hedge fund arms into a €137bn alternatives platform.

Global insurer Allianz said it plans to transfer the shares of Allianz Real Estate, its wholly owned “captive” real estate investment platform, to PIMCO, making it part of its third-party asset management business.

Allianz Real Estate, which manages €73.6bn of real estate investments predominantly on behalf of Allianz insurance companies, has to date focused on core real estate and debt. PIMCO, a $1.91trn fixed income fund manager, has a real estate platform focused on opportunistic and credit investments.

Last year, Allianz Real Estate CEO François Trausch told IPE Real Assets that the company planned to move further into third-party fund management with the objective of reaching €100bn in assets under management by 2024, of which 10% would be managed for external clients. A merger with PIMCO would expedite Allianz Real Estate’s transition into third-party fund management.

“This is a very interesting time for those of us at Allianz Real Estate and the alliance is very balanced for us as we are complementary in what we do,” Trausch said today. “By playing off each other’s strengths, we will be able to do great things in the future.”

He added: “When we match the Allianz Real Estate global footprint and the Allianz appetite for real estate with the unparalleled access to the PIMCO intellect, research, analytics, focus on performance and of course global distribution capabilities we are destined to become one of the world’s most well rounded real estate specialists and alternatives experts.”

Meanwhile, AXA Investment Managers, another insurance-owned fund manager, annouced that it would combine its €87bn real assets arm with its structured credit and hedge fund units to create AXA IM Alts.

Isabelle Scemama will remain CEO of AXA IM-Real Assets and will oversee the new entity, while Deborah Shire, global head of structured finance, will become deputy head of AXA IM Alts and join the AXA IM management board.

“Our business growth in recent years has been driven by our team’s ability to create the right products and to source and execute the right deals for our clients, while at the same time continually demonstrating our ability to transact through a range of complexities and risk profiles as well as via multiple entry points and with scale,” said Scemama.

“The creation of AXA IM Alts would allow us to build on this momentum and enhance our offering to clients, while at the same time maintain continuity in the performance and service we provide to them.

“For me personally, it is a huge honour to have been chosen to lead this significant new business and the hugely talented people it brings together, creating a true global leader in alternative investments.”