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Skandia closes guaranteed fund as it seeks safe haven £1.2m buys stake in Lighthouse

Skandia has bought a 9.9 per cent stake in national IFA and network group Lighthouse.

The life office will pay almost £1.2m for 2,248,049 new shares at a price of 52p per share when the deal is completed early next month.

Lighthouse plans to use the capital to support the group&#39s drive for expansion, which focuses on recruitment rather than acquisition. The funds will be used to provide a financial buffer as the business grows and new members settle in.

The group has already expanded to 400 from 300 RIs at the beginning of the year. A deal reached last month with Canada Life, which will see the transfer of its direct salesforce to Lighthouse, could expand this to as many as 600 RIs.

Lighthouse Group chairman David Hickey says: “It is nice to have a product provider exhibit public confidence in the company and our strategy. It sends a lot of messages to a lot of people. It is an important endorsement of what we have been doing. It is also evidence of distributors getting closer to manufacturers.”

Skandia director of sales for national accounts and new markets Steve Powell says: “This secures our relationship with somebody whose business model we believe in. Lighthouse is well placed and we have known them for a number of years. We have worked closely with them and are keen to carry on doing so.”

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