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Adviser bags 'major investment' from private equity firm

Adviser bags 'major investment' from private equity firm

Consolidator Perspective Financial Group has received a “major investment” from private equity house CBPE Capital as the firm looks to continue buying advice firms.

The firm announced today (January 6) its partnership with CBPE would help “accelerate Perspective’s expansion” through both organic growth and further acquisitions in a “highly fragmented” advice market.

Since founding in 2008 the firm has acquired 35 IFA businesses — including four in 2019 — and now has 15 offices across the UK employing 180 staff and 55 advisers.

The group has since gained a reputation for buying IFAs looking to retire and exit the industry and has benefited from the growing consolidation in the advice market.

The fact that a large share of advisers are approaching retirement combined with the additional regulations introduced by Mifid II making it expensive to run an advice firm has caused a flurry of acquisition activity in the advice market, which is expected to increase.

Research published by Canada Life last year (October 2) showed a third of advice firms were considering selling their business and two in five anticipated the sale would be to a larger company. 

The movement is also fuelled by a decent supply of both sellers and buyers in the market, with large players the likes of Quilter leading the charge for buyer demand.

Perspective — which provides advice for individuals and corporations on pensions, retirement planning, tax, investments and protection — turns over £17m per year and has £2.8bn assets under management on behalf of more than 18,000 clients.

It has an in-house training academy, which has pushed its average adviser age to 10 years below the industry average, as well as a discretionary fund management service through its partnership with Cambridge Investments.

CPBE, formerly known as Close Brothers Private Equity, has a track record of investing in the financial services industry, including the IPOs of JTC and Xafinity — a global administration provider and corporate pensions consultancy respectively — alongside run-off insurance firm Compre and fintech company Xceptor.

Ian Wilkinson, group managing director at Perspective, said: “CBPE is the right partner for us as we enter the next stage of our development.

“They have a proven track record in the financial services space and have helped build some great companies.”

Mr Wilkinson added the partnership would help the firm “accelerate” its growth strategy and said he was excited to expand the business.

Richard Thompson, director at CBPE, said Perspective was a “great business” with a “strong management team, robust compliance approach and a respected and increasingly high-profile brand”. 

He added: “We look forward to supporting management as they deliver on the strategy which combines a continued focus on providing high quality advice to their existing client base, growing organically and making selective acquisitions.”

Last year Perspective acquired Newcastle-based IFA Galloway and Whitfield (Life and Pensions), north west-based IFA Investment Principles, Thornton Springer Financial Services (based in London), and Goodman Financial Planning in Marlborough.