Principal to Buy Chilean Pension Firm

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By Rachel Begle

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Des Moines-based Principal Financial Group has announced plans to buy a Chilean pension company for $1.51 billion.

The Des Moines Register says Principal reported the deal on Monday for AFP Cuprum S.A. The purchase is expected to close in the first quarter of 2013.

Principal Chairman Larry Zimpleman told the newspaper that, "If you just sit on your cash you're not getting any return. I'm a little surprised that we're not seeing more deals out there."

The company has spent $2 billion on five acquisitions and one long-term joint venture, counting Cuprum, since 2010.

Cuprum has $32.1 billion of assets under management and 1,100 employees. Principal had $367 billion of assets under management at the end of June. It employs more than 6,000 workers in the Des Moines area.

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