Quilter says it has received regulatory approval for the sale of its single-strategy asset management business.Photo: Timothy Bernard/African News Agency (ANA)
JOHANNESBURG - Quilter Plc, the financial services company that was spun off Old Mutual last year, yesterday moved to consolidate its foothold in the UK advisory market by signing an agreement to acquire the entire issued ordinary share capital of Lighthouse Group for approximately £46.2million (about R828m).

Quilter said the purchase would be housed within its wholly-owned indirect subsidiary Intrinsic Financial Services.

The group said that Lighthouse shareholders would receive 33pence (R6.1247) a share in cash as part of the transaction, representing a premium of 24.5percent to the closing price of 26.5pence a Lighthouse share on Tuesday.

Quilter said Lighthouse and Intrinsic were highly complementary in structure and focus on delivering good customer outcomes.

Chief executive Paul Feeney said that their focus was on delivering good client outcomes and that this always starts with advice.

“We are delighted to have agreed a recommended cash offer for Lighthouse and look forward to their advisers joining the Quilter family.

"As the advice market consolidates the strategic acquisition of Lighthouse will help secure Quilter’s position as the place to go for trusted financial advice in the UK,” Feeney said.

Quilter was unbundled from Old Mutual Plc last year to take over the UK wealth management business.

It was listed separately on the JSE and London Stock Exchange after a managed separation from Old Mutual plc last year.

Quilter said the Lighthouse Group’s Communities and Wealth advisory channels would join Intrinsic’s current adviser network, one of the largest in the UK, supporting more than 3500 advisers.

Quilter said that the acquisition would be completed during the second quarter of the year, subject to conditions and approvals.

Lighthouse, which is listed on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in the UK, yesterday said that its national advisory channels, Lighthouse Financial Advice and Lighthouse Carrwood, had a strong alignment with Intrinsic’s national advice business.

The company said that the channels would contribute significantly to Quilter’s vision to supply high quality controlled advice.

Chief executive Malcolm Streat- field said that Lighthouse had a rich history, having been on AIM since the year 2000 and was moving from its pre-retail distribution review (RDR) network roots to its position today as an affinity and professional relationship led, multi-channel financial advisory business.

“We are proud of all that Lighthouse has achieved and are excited to continue our journey with Quilter.

"Quilter is a mature and profitable group with considerable scale and demonstrably values face to face advice and appropriate customer outcomes, making it a great home for Lighthouse’s staff, advisers and clients,” Streatfield said.

He added that the transaction had the support of the Lighthouse directors.

“The Lighthouse directors, who have been so advised by Investec Bank plc as to the financial terms of the acquisition, consider the terms of the acquisition to be fair and reasonable.”

Quilter shares rose 3.55percent on the JSE yesterday to close at R28.88.

BUSINESS REPORT