Barclays Global, which oversees $1.5 trillion, would be Fink’s biggest acquisition, building on his 2006 takeover of Merrill Lynch & Co.’s asset-management business. That deal pushed the New York-based company deeper into actively managed stock funds. BGI would add passive investments where rivals such as Pacific Investment Management Co. aren’t as competitive.
“This could be a transformational deal,” Burton Greenwald, a mutual-fund consultant based in Philadelphia, said in an interview.
The talks between Barclays and BlackRock aren’t exclusive, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the auction is private. An agreement could be announced this week. BlackRock is in contact with Mideast investors about providing equity financing for the deal, one of the people said.