AFH set to list on AIM to attract further acquisitions

AFH Financial is set to list on the Alternative Investment Market in the second quarter of this year, hoping that the move will attract new investors, improve liquidity in its shares and raise additional capital when required.

AFH Financial has listed on the Icap Securities & Derivatives Exchange since June 2011, but it is now set to withdraw its ordinary shares from trading.

The Cheltenham-based IFA said the aim was to always move to AIM at an appropriate time and the directors now believe it has made “sufficient progress” while on ISDX such that moving to AIM is a the next logical step.

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The directors added the move will “further enhance the profile of the company and help to attract future acquisition opportunities as the company seeks to expand”.

Preparation for the move to AIM is underway but this remains at a relatively early stage, AFH said.

Most recently AFH bought the assets of Stoke-based independent advisory firm SR Wealth Management in a deal worth around £200,000.

This deal is the 20th completed by AFH since listing on ISDX in June 2011 and is the seventh since the Retail Distribution Review was implemented in January 2013.

The comes after the consolidator raised around £2.8m in equity and bonds to fund further acquisitions last August.

Alan Hudson, AFH chief executive, said: “We believe that given the fundamentals of the business and the nature of the IFA market, the time has come for a move to AIM.

“The increased profile will assist the company in its aim to expand through strategic acquisitions and organic growth.”

AFH is one of several firms looking to acquire advice companies. Last week FTAdviser revealed that Hampshire-based Prosperity IFA is in “advanced” buyout talks with 10 firms.