View more on these topics

Misys to buy Financial Options and Kestrel for £55m

Software giant Misys is poised to scoop up IFA networks Financial Options and Kestrel for around £55m.

Money Marketing can reveal top level talks are at an advanced stage between Financial Options Group and Misys, which already owns the 900 member firm Countrywide, to create the UK&#39s biggest IFA.

Teams from the software giant have completed due diligence, and the deal is expected to be unveiled before the Options annual conference takes place in Birmingham on September 10.

While Financial Options and Kestrel will retain their identities and members, the deal will create a super firm of IFAs with more than 1,600 member firms and more than 3,600 registered individuals.

Countrywide along with 200-member Kestrel and 500-member Financial Options, will together outstrip DBS, currently the UK&#39s biggest network, by more than 1,200 RIs.

Misys will gain from increased distribution of its software among Fog members in addition to any profits the giant IFA will make.

Shareholders with substantial stakes in Fog, including chairman Mark Blake, joint managing directors Michael Blake and Ron Leith, and finance director Kevin Budge, are all set to receive significant sums from the deal.

Misys this month announced it has a £50m war chest to branch into financial services over the internet.

It threw down the gauntlet to smaller on-line rival The Exchange, which recently floated.

It is understood that Misys has approached a number of networks since the beginning of the year with a view to making an acquisition, including IFA Network and Berkeley Independent.

Sources do not rule out further network acquisitions by the software giant.

A source says: &#34Informal chats have been under way since the end of last year. Misys are aiming to be number one. This deal takes them to number one. They will be bigger than DBS.&#34

Countrywide sales and marketing director Max Wright says: &#34There will always be rumours on acquisitions and we do not comment on rumours.&#34

Leith refused to deny that the deal is taking place.


AITC appoints cult French film director to sell itself to investors

That most British of institutions, the Investment Trust industry, is resorting to a cult French film director to sell itself to UK investors.The AITC has hired critically acclaimed French director Gilles Mimouni, best known for his 1996 film &#34L&#39Appartement&#34, to direct the first wave of television advertisements, due to kick off in October.&#34L&#39Appartement&#34 starred Vincent […]

Unum new business soars

Income protection specialists Unum has announced a 77 per cent leap in new business figures for the first six months of 1999 compared to the same period last year.Unum says its total new business jumped to £16.6m from £9.5m the previous year.The firms IFA group business soared by 123 per cent to £11.4m from £5.1m […]

Scottish Provident appoints regulator to its board

Scottish Provident has appointed regulator Dr Oonagh McDonald to its board as a non-executive director.McDonald is currently a member of the Insurance Brokers Regulatory Authority and is a former director of the FSA.Prior to her regulatory positions she served as Labour member of Parliament for Thurrock from July 1976 to 1987 serving as opposition front […]

General Electric takes aim at long term care market

The world&#39s second biggest company is to launch a new financial services firm in a bid to become the UK&#39s biggest long term care insurer. US based General Electric Company, valued at $250bn, is launching a UK version of the largest long term care insurer in the US, GE Financial Assurance. Next month it will […]

Is three a crowd?

The pension versus Isa debate has raged on and off for years. Les Cameron, head of technical at Prudential, asks if three’s a crowd.   I think the debate was arguably settled by pensions freedom when the biggest downside of pensions – limited access and poor death benefits – was fundamentally changed. Total access, albeit with […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm