The Money Portal, the acquisitive UK retail fund distributor, has bought David Aaron Partnership and Bates Investment Services in a double swoop which boosts its funds under management to £2bn.
The deal, which TMP believes elevates it into the top three distributors of UK retail funds, will see the companies retain their senior management and branding, with their respective founders Graham Bates and David Aaron joining TMP's board. Both will seek new advisers for their firms, which have a total of 46 RIs between them. TMP aims to meet its target of 150 RIs within 18 months through further acquisitions.
The deal represents TMP's first move into building an independent advisory arm following its purchase of discount brokerages HCF, Willis Owen and the Isa and With-Profits Bonds Shops earlier this year. TMP now has a total of more than 500,000 clients.
Both Bates and Aaron expect the deal to generate significant cost savings and believe they can build on each other's strengths, especially in IT, to improve their research functions further.
TMP managing director Richard Craven says: “We are delighted to welcome David and Graham to the board as they are industry-renowned figures with nationally regarded businesses. These acquisitions form the blueprint for building a significant advisory business.”
Aaron says: “Our alliance with TMP will create a real force at the top end of the market, enabling us to attract experienced and skilled advisers as well as providing a professional service that is second to none.”
Bates says: “IFAs need to consolidate to benefit from economies of scale but quality, not headcount, is the key issue. We are looking forward to adding our expertise to help TMP develop the UK's leading research-led advisory business.”