Ex-Barclays arm moves into workplace advice

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The former buyout arm of Barclays has entered the advice and retirement income market by taking a majority stake in workplace advice firm Wealth at Work.

The Financial Times reports that private equity house Equistone, which used to be part of Barclays, has backed the £50m management buyout of Wealth at Work.

Liverpool-based Wealth at Work offers financial education, retirement income planning and regulated advice to employees and has worked with major financial services firms as well as companies such as Marks and Spencer and BT.

The buyout is the first UK investment from Equistone’s Fund V, which closed at €2bn in April.

Private equity firm Palatine retains minority stake in Wealth at Work alongside the management team. Palatine also backed a management buyout of advice firm Wren Sterling, formerly known as Towergate Financial, in March.

Under the terms of the deal, Wealth at Work chief executive David Cassidy will stay with the businesss.

Equistone partner Steve O’ Hare told the newspaper: “Regulatory change and increased pressures for employers to boost engagement with staff is driving demand for services at Wealth at Work.

“Pension schemes can be highly complex and given the new flexibilities and choices, it is more important than ever that employees are guided in the right direction.”