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By Michael Trudeau | Published Aug 14, 2012

Sanlam reveals four more adviser acquisitions imminent

Sanlam UK is set to complete the acquisition of a further four advice companies based across England and Scotland, FTAdviser can reveal.

According to Oliver Couchman, head of partnerships at Sanlam UK, four advice firms across the UK “will have the documentation signed before the year is out”.

Although he could not reveal the firms’ names at this point, Mr Couchman said that the firms were respectively based the Bristol, south-east London, the North East and Scotland.

He added that another two acquisitions will likely follow closely behind this quartet and that a further seven or eight are at a less certain stage of talks.

Sanlam’s aggressive acquisition strategy will increase its adviser numbers from 60 to 300 over the course of four years. The company took a large step towards this goal with the buyout of Worcester-based English Mutual and 43 of its 49 advisers last week.

Earlier in the same week, Sanlam announced that it had purchased three advisory firms: Bristol-based The Oakdene Practice, Warrington-based Parkgate Financial Solutions and Devon-based Libra Associates.

The three firms employed a total of six advisers, all of whom are to retire before the end of the year ahead of the Retail Distribution Review.

Sanlam said in a statement that the purchase of English Mutual will add some £400m in assets under influence, while the three smaller businesses will provide the company with £450,000 in yearly trail income and £75m in funds under investment. Sanlam previously managed around £650m.

The company also acquired approximately 8,000 names and addresses as part of these deals.

As well as acquiring firms outright, Sanlam UK is in the market for client books belonging to advisers looking to leave the industry as the RDR approaches, where each client would bring in at least £500 renewal income per year.

Nigel Speirs, CEO of Sanlam Private Wealth and head of distribution for Sanlam UK, said the four deals last week, which take the total number completed in 2012 to eight, represent a “stepping up” of Sanlam’s expansion strategy and he predicted the completion of another 10 to 15 before the end of the year.

Mr Speirs said: “We have had enough enquiries from advisers looking to leave the industry to keep us busy. The leads either come to us direct because they know we are in the market, or they are introduced via brokers.”

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