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Standard takes 10% stake in SimplyBiz

Standard Life has become the first product provider investor in SimplyBiz after buying a 10 per cent stake.

SimplyBiz says it rebuffed an offer for the whole business from a different com- pany before deciding to sell a small portion to Standard on a single-investor, silent-partner basis.

Standard will not take a seat on SimplyBiz’s board.

This is Standard Life’s second foray into the dist- ribution market after buy- ing a 20 per cent stake in Tenet last July.

SimplyBiz, which supp- orts 1,300 adviser firms, has been trading for three years and reported a profit of £2.25m in June.

It says there are no fur- ther plans to bring in investors beyond Standard. Money raised from the deal will be used to strengthen technology and compliance services.

Standard Life chief exec- utive Trevor Matthews says: “This is another important step in the development of our business and we are delighted to be associa- ted with a company of SimplyBiz’s standing in the industry.

“Given the quality of their proposition, management team and track record of delivery we believe this represents an excellent investment. We believe the future for Simply Biz is bright.”

SimplyBiz executive chairman Ken Davy says: “The initial catalyst was an approach we received for 100 per cent of the business but we would not countenance that. We are keen to continue growing as an independent organi- sation and decided the best way was to select one indiv- idual firm with a modest stake in the business.

“This would establish clearly the significance of SimplyBiz as a force in the marketplace.”

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