Lloyds Banking Group has acquired Embark in a deal worth £390m.
Lloyds has acquired the Embark business and its subsidiary brands, which includes the adviser platform, but the sale excludes the Rowanmoor Sipp and Ssas administration business, which will be retained by existing shareholders.
The deal will see Lloyds acquire £35bn of assets under administration on behalf of 410,000 consumer clients within Embark.
Jackie Leiper, managing director of pensions, stockbroking and distribution at Scottish Widows, will become chief executive officer of Embark once the deal completes.
She said: “We know that digital engagement is key to helping people visualise their financial future and this acquisition offers huge potential for us to take our retirement proposition to the next level.
“It’s more important than ever that advisers supporting clients in navigating long-term savings decisions are supported by the right products and services, and this will help us build the best possible experience for intermediaries to meet their customers’ evolving needs, expand our distribution reach and boost our capability to unlock new opportunities, backed by the deep-rooted trust in our brand.”
Scottish Widows is set to benefit from today’s (July 29) deal as it moves to enhance its long-term savings proposition for intermediaries such as to digitise its Retirement Account.
Scottish Widows also said advisers will benefit from smoother sales and onboarding of new clients whilst being able to manage existing clients’ needs more efficiently.
The deal will also help Lloyds increase the reach of its investment offerings and support its aim of becoming a top-three execution only/robo-advice business in the medium term.
Following the deal, Lloyds will provide investment to “accelerate Embark’s proposition and service innovations for the intermediary sector”.
David Barral, chairman of Embark, said: “The combination of Lloyd’s Banking Group’s financial strength and distribution reach, combined with the agility, digital capability, and expertise of Embark, will provide the perfect opportunity to create a market leading proposition for consumers, intermediaries, and strategic partners.
"Rowanmoor, as a leading specialist Sipp, Group Pension Trust, and Ssas administration provider, will become an independent standalone business.
"It will have the ongoing support of existing shareholders who remain committed to the business, and will continue to work closely with partners and financial advisers to deliver excellent service and good outcomes for their customers.”
The deal is expected to complete by the end of 2021.
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