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Fintel eyes businesses with adviser customers

Fintel eyes businesses with adviser customers

Fintel joint chief executive officer Matt Timmins has said the business wants to buy more firms which have advisers as their customers as part of its growth strategy.

In its half year results today (September 21), Fintel, which recently rebranded from The SimplyBiz Group, reported a 10 per cent growth in revenue and a 12 per cent increase in adjusted Ebitda, which the firm put down to its acquisition of Defaqto last year.

Revenue stood at £31.7m for the six months to June 30, up from £28.9m last year. 

Speaking to FTAdviser this morning on the back of the results, Timmins said: “The combination of Simplybiz and Defaqto together is a really powerful force and has helped us grow.

“We've had a 52 per cent increase in the first half of the year in the usage of the Defaqto fintech system so more and more advisers are using the engaged platform to give advice to clients and growing that either incrementally through adviser firms or through big enterprise deals like the Tatton deal, is a key part of that.”

However, he explained that outside of that, M&A in the tech space remained an opportunity for the firm.

“It’s always an option given the strength of the balance sheet. We’ve had 14 transactions in the past that we are well used to buying and selling businesses, buying more than selling. There are some great businesses out there.

“At this moment in time, there isn’t anything on the agenda but we are well positioned to do it. We are looking at businesses in the tech space and we are looking at businesses where we can acquire a customer set of advisers, similar types of businesses to us.”

He added: “We've had two disposals this year already, a rebrand and a significant amount of work to do so I think we’ll take a breather for a few weeks.”

This comes as in its full year results for 2020, Fintel said it could take advantage of “selective and appropriate acquisition opportunities” following a successful year.

In the full year results for the 12 months to December 31, revenues of £61m were recorded. In comparison to the £62.8m received in 2019, this meant revenues dipped by a mere £1.8m during the pandemic.

During the pandemic bosses at the group took a pay cut as the company froze salaries and bonuses.

More partnerships ahead

Last week, Tatton Asset Management bought the Verbatim funds from Fintel, formerly known as Simplybiz, for £5.8m.

As part of the transaction, Tatton entered a five-year strategic distribution partnership with Fintel which will provide it with access to 3,800 financial intermediary firms and its 6,000 Defaqto users.

Speaking on the deal, Timmins said the deal was simply about “two businesses playing to their strengths”. 

“Tatton is a fund management business and we are a fintech and support services business so we came together and came to the conclusion that they would be the right the right owner and a great custodian of the Verbatim funds that would run the funds well for the benefit of advisers, which is what they do with their own model portfolios, and that they and their clients would benefit from our fintech put in right at the heart of the business.