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Sanlam acquires two IFA client banks

Sanlam Private Wealth has acquired the client banks of two IFA firms.

Llanelli-based Brian D Thomas Financial Planning Services and Kent-based George Ognibeni have 4,000 and 1,000 clients respectively and both have around £23m funds under influence.

No principals or staff from either firm will join SPW, which takes its funds under influence over £550m with the acquisitions.

SPW chief executive Nigel Speirs (pictured) says: “We remain on the lookout for quality businesses like these and have been approached by a number of prospective sellers already in the new year. We undertake stringent due diligence and after much consideration on a number of potential acquisitions, we decided to proceed with these.”

Speirs added the firm hopes to announce further acquisitions in the near future.


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There are 4 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. This sound like Sanlam are buying assets and dumping the liability onto the FSCS – ultimately other IFAs. Is it any wonder why our contributions are so high when the big boys behave this way?

    As for the staff, TUPE regulations apply is Sanlam are taking over the operations (servicing the policies and giving advice to clients). How are we going to attracted talent into our industry when large firms try to ignore the law of the land?

    Considering a board member is an ex Governor of the Bank of England one would have expected better.

    Sanlam have a lot of explaining to do.

  2. Detached observer 24th January 2012 at 1:38 pm


    I suggest you read the article again. The client banks are being acquired, not the businesses. No staff are being transferred so TUPE is irrelevant.

    If you are an IFA looking to retire as a consequence of the RDR are you suggesting that you can’t sell off your “assets” ? For the highest price you can achieve?

    I’d like to hear your justification as to why you’d expect the potential purchaser to also acquire your liabilities. Don’t you think that would reduce the price any purchaser is willing to pay?

  3. With the recent FSA announcement that trail commisson will cease as soon as you recommend changes to the investments – and at the same time the aquiring firm is responsible for ongoing monitoring of investments – Sanlam have 11 months to convert 5000 clients to a CAR model. Dont fancy their chances….

  4. Detached observer,

    I have checked this out with a couple of barristers and TUPE does apply. As they are acquiring the undertaking, and thus workers transfer with the work. You can’t just make people redundant because you are selling the company, or the goodwill of the company.

    TUPE does not apply, unless a share purchase takes place and then employment transfers across automatically anyway. Trying to say it’s an asset sale doesn’t wash – as asset sales are things like equipment, not the client base.

    I would recommend any member of staff who has lost their job in connection with the transfer of business, contact a solicitor. Check if you have Legal cover with your home insurance, and remember you have a short period in which to lodge a claim.

    Both parties to the transaction would have been told by their respective solicitors about TUPE, and I feel this shows a lack of Integrity, if the employees have not had their employment rights respected. Sanlam need to give reassurances that they have done things by the book.

    The FSA should look at these deals with a magnifying glass. Were employment rights respected, and who is going to pick up the compensation tab that could run into millions?

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