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Burns-Anderson on sale for 12m

Burns-Anderson is looking for a provider or providers to buy the business from its shareholders for 12m.

The network’s manage-ment, which aims to continue at the firm, intends to use the money to pay off shareholders and invest the surplus in upgrading its technology and in-house IFA.

Burns-Anderson says some of its 450 shareholders – the biggest being former chief executive Steve Kelland – have supported the company for almost 20 years without seeing a return. As the network is unlisted, its equity is illiquid and it is difficult to sell and hinders fund-raising.

The network believes it has sufficient financial strength to be attractive to buyers. The management has been in talks with several providers, including Aegon, Axa, Friends Provident and Standard Life, but it recognises that there is nervousness among providers because of past network failures.

Burns-Anderson says one or two of the providers have been keen to invest part but not all the 12m. It is not concerned whether ownership goes to one or several providers.

One part of Burns-Anderson’s technology drive will be to build its own wrap proposition or white label. It says it is a firm believer in the value that wrap and technology-based models can offer IFAs.

It is thought to be carrying out a beauty parade of wrap providers later this year to look at propositions but is also keen to launch its own offering.

Head of marketing Adrian Lewis says: “We have been in talks with several providers. One or two have said they would be happy to stump up some of the money but not all of it. It will initially be used to pay back our shareholders. We would also like to invest in technology and in developing our own IFA.”

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