Blog Img

Financial Services Newsletter Friday 3rd march 2023

Back to Blogs

Financial Services News

Advanta Wealth has struck a three-year partnership with the Rugby Players Association (RPA). As part of the partnership, Advanta Wealth will provide financial education and advice to all RPA members, including players from the Premiership Rugby squads, England Women Red Roses, as well as the RPA Retired Players members. (Olivia Bybel, 10/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Advanta Wealth strikes deal with Rugby Players Association')

Walker Crips is to change the name of its wealth management and financial planning arm. Walker Crips Wealth Management will rebrand to Walker Crips Financial Planning on 6 April. There will be no changes to the services provided. Dominic Martin, Managing Director of Walker Crips Wealth Management, said the rebrand better reflected the range of financial planning services the wealth manager provides. (Christopher Johnson, 23/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Revealed: Walker Crips rebrands wealth arm amid expansion drive')

Shares in Arbuthnot Banking Group rose recently after it issued a trading update stating its annual profits were likely to beat market expectations. The group’s share price rose 3.3% to reach 950p at 8.27am on the 23rd February, following a market update in which it said it ‘expects to report pre-tax profits ahead of consensus market expectations’.(Robin Amos, 23/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Arbuthnot shares rise as profit set to beat expectations')

James Hambro & Partners’ (JH&P) decision to set up shop in Edinburgh and Leeds helped the wealth firm pass the £5bn mark for the first time in its history. According to its annual results covering the year to 30th April 2022, JH&P’s assets under management (AUM) rose from £4.7bn to £5.1bn. Revenue increased by 11% to £34.2m. ‘It’s been another good year and I’m pleased to see assets under management break through the £5bn mark,’ the firm’s CEO Andy Steel said. (Caroline Hug, 27/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'James Hambro & Partners hits £5bn as Edinburgh and Leeds pays off')

​Aviva will transfer its entire in-house advice team to its national advice firm Succession Wealth, which it acquired in 2022. The insurer currently has 30 Wealth Advisers and 24 providing advice on equity release. They will all join Succession in the coming months, although no exact timeline for the move has been shared. (Chloe Meley, 13/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Aviva to transfer entire advice team to Succession')

​The UK economy narrowly avoided falling into recession last year after a period of zero growth between October and December. Figures for December alone indicate the economy fell by 0.5%, with strikes across the rail network, the health service and Royal Mail contributing to the squeeze. The stagnation in GDP, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), was weaker than the 0.1% expansion expected by the Bank of England. (John Schaffer, 10/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'UK economy narrowly dodges recession')

​The Chief Executive of Dynamic Planner has said the era of product sales is over as the platform sector embraces personal financial planning at scale. Ben Goss said the sector has woken up to the reality that its, the client not product, that should be at the centre of financial planning technology. Goss made the statement at the Dynamic Planner’s 11th Annual Conference in London where he set out the vision for the platform industry and unveiled new developments. (Momodou Musa Touray, 7/2/2023, Money Marketing, 'Dynamic Planner boss says era of product sales over')

Mergers & Acquisitions

​LGT has struck a £140m deal to buy Abrdn’s wealth arm, excluding its managed portfolio service (MPS). The Liechtenstein-headquartered banking group will absorb about 4,000 clients and 140 employees of Abrdn Capital, Abrdn’s discretionary fund management (DFM) business, into its UK-based DFM, LGT Wealth Management. Abrdn Capital currently runs around £6bn in assets. Its acquisition will lift LGT Wealth Management’s assets to more than £28bn. (Robin Amos & Dylan Lobo, 28/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'LGT strikes £140m deal for £6bn Abrdn DFM arm')

​Investec Wealth & Investment has completed the purchase of Scottish wealth management firm Murray Asset Management (MAM). The deal for the Edinburgh-based wealth firm, first announced last July, sees 20 MAM staff with a combined 100 years’ experience joining Investec W&I’s ranks. (Dylan Lobo, 8/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Investec W&I seals deal for Scottish wealth firm')

​Evelyn Partners has acquired Leathers LLP (Leathers), a firm of Chartered Accountants and Tax Specialists with offices in Newcastle and Harrogate. Leathers was founded in 1990 by Michael Leather. It is focused on advising high net worth individuals, families, business owners and corporates. Evelyn Partners Chief Professional Services Director Andrew Wilkes said: “Michael Leather has built a highly respected firm with a great client base and one which is a very complementary fit with Evelyn Partners both in terms of expertise and culture." (Jean-Baptiste Andrieux, 8/2/2023, Money Marketing, 'Evelyn Partners expands presence in the North of England')

​Radiant Financial Group (Radiant) has acquired the assets and goodwill of Doncaster-based IFA, Ethos Financial Solutions. Ethos Financial Solutions has £300m in assets under advice (AUA), as well as 18 members of staff, including five Advisers. The latest deals take Radiant’s staff numbers to 150 and assets under advice to £1.6bn. (Jean-Baptise Andrieux, 2/2/2023, Money Marketing, 'Radiant expands in Northern region')

​The number of acquisitions involving UK financial advice firms has risen by 11% from 398 to a record high of 440 in the last year. The record deals are being driven by private-equity backed consolidators, latest data from international law firm Mayer Brown shows. (Momodou Musa Touray, 6/2/2023, Money Marketing, 'IFA firms’ acquisitions rise to record 440 deals in 2022')

​Consolidator Fairstone has bought Mantle Financial Planning for an undisclosed sum, adding more than £450m in funds under management to the group. The deal, which is Fairstone’s first acquisition in the year, brings 11 Advisers, 16 staff as well as more than 2000 clients into the group.(Momodou Musa Touray, 1/2/2023, Money Marketing, 'Fairstone buys IFA firm with £450m FUM')

The UK subsidiary of Swedish Wealth Manager Söderberg & Partners will likely acquire at least five advice firms as part of its buy and build acquisition strategy. Bill Vasilieff, Chairman of the UK company board, said that the firm is in “advanced talks” with 20 advice firms. The IFA businesses it is looking to purchase, ranges in size and market share from £100m to £2bn AUA. (Momodou Musa Touray, 15/2/2023, Money Marketing, 'Bill Vasilieff’s new platform group wants to buy five IFA firms')

​NatWest has bought an 85% stake in pensions fintech firm Cushon for £144m. Cushon, which has £1.8bn in assets under management (AUM) across 500,000 customers, will retain the remaining 15% position. The fintech’s corporate clients comprise 250 blue-chip companies, including several FTSE 100 firms. (John Schaffer, 14/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'NatWest buys £1.8bn pensions fintech')


​The Head of Investec’s UK wealth management business has left her role after just eight months. Barbara-Ann King took over as CEO of Investec Wealth & Investment last July from Ciaran Whelan, who remains Managing Director of Investec in the UK. An Investec spokesperson confirmed King’s departure and said the firm’s Financial Director, Iain Hooley, has taken on the role of acting Chief Executive. (Robin Amos, 28/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Revealed: Investec Wealth CEO exits after eight months')

Progeny has appointed Heather Ross as Head of its adviser academy. She brings over 30 years’ of experience to the position, having joined the business last year upon its acquisition of Balmoral Asset Management. Progeny’s adviser academy was launched in April 2019 and currently offers a three-year programme targeting chartered status for its graduates. (Robin Amos, 27/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Progeny creates head of academy role for advice veteran')

​Octopus Investments has appointed a new Chief Executive. Benjamin Davis, CEO of Octopus Real Estate, replaces Ruth Handcock as group CEO. Davis joined Octopus in 2010, initially as Investment Director for Octopus Investments across multiple retail investment products, including Octopus Apollo Venture Capital Trust. In 2018 he became CEO of Octopus Healthcare and a year later CEO of Octopus Real Estate. (Dylan Lobo, 28/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Octopus Investments appoints new CEO')

​Ed Caswell has announced that he is leaving Northampton-based MHA Caves Wealth after a decade at the business. In a LinkedIn post, Caswell thanked MHA Caves for giving him a graduate opportunity ‘fresh out of university.’ The post did not reveal his next move and MHA Caves did not comment on Caswell’s move. (Christopher Johnson, 27/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'MHA Caves 30 under 30 star exits firm')

​Mike Rigby has joined WealthKernel as Chief Compliance Officer. Rigby joins the investment platform after most recently serving as Chief Risk Officer at Investec Wealth & Investment, a role he left in August. (Robin Amos, 17/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Ex-Investec W&I risk boss takes compliance role at platform')

LGT Wealth Management has promoted Elliot O’Brien to the newly created role of Head of Business Transformation to develop the firm’s digital innovation strategy. O'Brien is currently a Partner at the firm. He joined the business five years ago as an Investment Manager. Prior to this, he spent over four years at HSBC Private Bank working his way up from the role of Client Services Executive to Relationship Manager. (Christopher Johnson, 15/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'LGT Wealth Management creates senior role for digital push')

​Brooks Macdonald has appointed James Rawlingson as a Non-Executive Director and the Chair of its audit committee. The appointment follows Alan Carruthers stepping down as Chair of the board earlier this month due to health reasons. Senior Independent Director Richard Price has been Acting Chair. Rawlingson is currently Chair of Citibank UK’s audit and risk committee, Chair of the audit and risk assurance committee at the Foreign Office’s executive agency Wilton Park, and Chair at biotech firm Novai. He will take on his new role on 2 March, subject to regulatory approval. (John Schaffer, 16/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Brooks Macdonald announces new director')

In further news...Brooks Macdonald has made a trio of key appointments across its business. Senior Investment Director Andrew Bennie, who joined the business 13 years ago, has been appointed Investment Head of the wealth firm’s Manchester branch. Meanwhile, fellow Senior Investment Director Rachael Marsden had been named Head of the Leeds division just over three years after she joined the firm from Brewin Dolphin. At the same time, Brooks has hired Leanne Barnham to the newly created role of Global Head of Marketing. She brings 15 years of experience with her, joining from Ninety One where she was Head of UK Marketing. (Dylan Lobo, 13/2/2023, Citwire Wealth Manager, 'Brooks Macdonald appoints Manchester and Leeds investment heads')

​Anne McClean has joined London investment firm IPS Capital as Head of Wealth. McClean leaves Evelyn Partners where she was a Financial Planning Partner, having joined the group’s predecessor Smith & Williamson in March 2019. (Robin Amos, 14/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Evelyn partner joins London boutique as wealth head')

​Cohen & Steers has promoted Sean Cooney to Head of UK Wealth. The newly created role comes as the New York-based Investment Manager, which specialises in alternative and real assets, continues its expansion into the UK market. Cooney joined the firm in 2021 as Senior Director of EMEA wholesale distribution. Prior to this, he spent seven years at GAM, working as a Client Director for the UK Wholesale distribution channel. He also spent four years at Neptune as a Sales Manager. (Christopher Johnson, 9/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Cohen & Steers creates head of UK wealth role')

​AJ Bell has hired James Flintoft as a Portfolio Manager on its multi-asset investment team. Flintoff was Head of Investments at Newcastle-based Vertem Asset Management, where he lead the firm’s investment team and model portfolio proposition.(Robin Amos, 1/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'AJ Bell hires Vertem MPS head as portfolio manager')

Quilter Cheviot has expanded its business development team with two hires. George Adam has joined as Head of Wholesale Distribution. Prior to taking on this role, Adam spent more than three years at Pictet Asset Management where he was responsible for investment fund sales in the North of the UK and Ireland. Erin Florendine has also joined the firm as a Senior Business Development Manager with a focus on the professional services industry. Prior to joining Quilter Cheviot, she worked at Macmillan Estate Planning and also spent part of her career at law firm Addleshaw Goddard. (Christopher Johnson, 28/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Quilter Cheviot hires duo for ESG and professional services push')

In further news...​The Quilter Foundation, the charity arm of wealth management group Quilter, has appointed Jennifer Piper as its new Manager. She joins the Foundation after working with organisations in the charity sector internationally, including youth-oriented, non-governmental organisation JM International and South London-based Msizi Africa, which provides children in Lesotho with nutritious food. (Olivia Bybel, 1/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Quilter appoints strategy boss for charity arm')

Citi Private Bank has hired Penny Lovell as Managing Director to boost its wealth management division. Lovell was previously CEO of Sanlam Private Wealth. She exited the business in February 2022 following Sanlam’s acquisition by private equity house Oaktree Capital Management in 2021. (John Schaffer, 6/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Citi hires ex-Sanlam Private Wealth boss Penny Lovell')

Abrdn has hired Peter Branner as Chief Investment Officer (CIO). The CIO position had been vacant at the Scottish-headquartered asset manager since Rod Paris retired at the end of 2021. He joins from €580bn (£512.6bn) Dutch pension fund firm APG, where he worked as CIO for more than four years. (Christopher Johnson, 1/2/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Abrdn hires from pensions giant for vacant CIO position')

National independent financial adviser (IFA) firm Continuum has expanded into Northern Ireland with its latest hire. Michael Kirkwood will serve clients from “across his native Northern Ireland and beyond” as an IFA. Kirkwood holds a diploma in financial planning from the Personal Finance Society (PFS), an honours degree from Belfast University and over three decades of experience. (Darius McQuaid, 21/2/2023, Money Marketing, 'Continuum expands into Northern Ireland with new hire')

All information provided in this Market Digest has been gathered from Money Marketing and CityWire Wealth Manager.