CompaniesApr 29 2014

Towry confirms deal to acquire Baker Tilly advice arm

Search sponsored by

Wealth adviser Towry has confirmed it will be acquiring the assets of Baker Tilly’s private client financial advice and investment management business for an undisclosed sum, following market speculation.

The acquired business, which advises more than 4,500 private clients and holds over £1.5bn of client assets, originates from the RSM Tenon Financial Advice business that Baker Tilly acquired in 2013. RSM Tenon had made losses over several years.

The large majority of staff, including financial consultants, are expected to transfer. The deal includes the brand Link2wealth.

Baker Tilly and Towry have entered into agreements to ensure the smooth transfer of the business, with completion expected in Q2 2014.

The deal would be significant not only in size but also in that it would mark the second time in seven years that the national wealth management firm has bought out Baker Tilly’s advisory business.

In March 2007 Towry acquired Baker Tilly Financial Services Ltd, which comprised of 41 advisers across the country and serviced more than 20,000 clients. Following the acquisition, the businesses retained a referral relationship.

Earlier this month Towry announced the impending departure of chief executive Andrew Fisher who has been replaced by ex-Prudential UK and Europe head Rob Devey.

Mr Devey said: “This is a hugely important and exciting deal for us. Towry has been very impressed by the people we have met and our aim is to provide an outstanding service to their clients and an outstanding work environment for the team who will be joining us. We look forward to welcoming both clients and employees.”

John White, chief executive of Baker Tilly Financial Management Limited, added: “The clients and employees can be very reassured that Baker Tilly has found a strong and committed new owner for this business.

“Towry’s focus on financial planning and provision of advisory and discretionary investment management services to clients will give continuity around customer service.

“After the ownership changes of the last few years, this is a very positive move for the long term future of those who have been involved with this business.”

The transaction follows on from Towry’s acquisition of Bluefin from Axa, completed in November 2013, one of five deals signed in the past year.

Last year Mr Fisher revealed the firm was planning a post-Retail Distribution Review buying spree and was in talks with as many as 85 firms.