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B&B goes North with Aitchison & Colegrave buy

Bradford & Bingley has acquired the biggest IFA in Scotland, Aitchison & Colegrave, in a bid to extend its geographic coverage and weight in the high net worth market.

A&C was believed to be in talks with Skipton and other suitors recently. It will come under B&B&#39s Charcol brand as Charcol Aitchison & Colegrave, and will slot into the group&#39s new wealth business, complementing Holden Meehan, bought by B&B in July.

The deal sees Aitchison & Colegrave&#39s 20 RIs in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and London bring B&B&#39s total number of advisers up to 989.

As part of the agreement, Aitchison & Colegrave is looking at launching a Northern England presence in Manchester, Leeds or Birmingham.

B&B chief executive Ian Darby says his firm is looking to increase its presence in the region and sees A&C as likely to be able to enter the North England market.

A&C chief executive Brian Aitchison believes B&B will be able to feed off his firm&#39s strong name in Scotland and in the high-net-worth market. He thinks his firm will be a suitable complement to the essentially Southern Holden Meehan, both geographically and in market focus.

Aitchison says: “We have had a great deal of discussion with many different suitors but we believe the two firms will be able to lean on each other&#39s brand. It is a good fit for everyone concerned.”

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