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Liberty Will Acquire Wanger

Liberty Financial of Boston has agreed to purchase Wanger Asset Management of Chicago for $450 million, the companies announced last week.

Liberty will pay $280 million of the purchase price up front in cash, and the remaining $170 million over the next five years, if certain earnings objectives are met, Liberty announced. Liberty did not disclose these earnings goals, however.

The acquisition is expected to close in the fourth quarter, Liberty announced.

Liberty wanted to round out its product offerings with Wanger's well-known Acorn family of funds, said Gary Countryman, Liberty president and CEO, in a statement. Nonetheless, Liberty will hyphenate the names of the five Acorn funds with the Liberty name listed first.

Liberty has $67 billion in assets under management, and Wanger has $8.8 billion.