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Streatfield to depart Lighthouse after Quilter deal

Streatfield to depart Lighthouse after Quilter deal

Lighthouse chief executive Malcolm Streatfield is to leave the business following its acquisition by Quilter, while questions have been raised about the fate of advisers in the firm's national business.

Mr Streatfield has been employed at Lighthouse since 2002.

But following Quilter's announcement this morning that it intends to buy Lighthouse, a representative confirmed that Mr Streatfield and other management "are not staying with the business long-term".

The company’s chairman Richard Last had already announced his intention to retire from the role in May.

Lighthouse, an AIM listed advice business, is being acquired by Quilter in a deal valuing Lighthouse at £46.2m, including £4m of net cash on the Lighthouse balance sheet. The deal has yet to be approved by shareholders however.

Should the deal go though, Lighthouse shareholders will receive the 0.5p per share dividend previously forecast by Lighthouse, though Quilter stated if the final dividend paid is higher, then the sale price will fall.

There are still unanswered questions surrounding the fate of some of Lighthouse's 400 advisers. 

The firm's adviser network will transfer to the Intrinsic network at Quilter, giving advisers the choice of whether to remain independent, as they are at present, or to become restricted.

The national business within Lighthouse however, which includes an offering for high net worths, is still awaiting a decision on the integration of the business. A representative of Quilter said any changes will be made "in the interests of the client".

Lighthouse chairman Richard Last said in a statement this morning (April 3): "We have continued to make good financial and strategic progress in recent years despite softening market conditions and a tougher regulatory backdrop.

"However, the board believes that Lighthouse will benefit significantly from becoming part of Intrinsic and the wider Quilter group and will be better positioned to deliver an enhanced customer proposition and offer increased opportunities to current staff and advisers that will be available within a larger group.

"Furthermore, the acquisition provides Lighthouse shareholders with the opportunity to realise their investment in full and in cash at an attractive premium to the levels at which the share price has traded in recent months.

"The board of Lighthouse is therefore unanimously recommending Lighthouse shareholders to vote in favour of the acquisition."

david.thorpe@ft.com