Print this article

London & Capital, Waverton Tie The Knot

Tom Burroughes

1 March 2024

UK-based wealth management companies yesterday announced that they are merging.

The agreement, the specific financial terms of which were not disclosed, is subject to regulatory approval. The combined entity will have more than £17 billion ($21.5 billion) in assets under management.

As part of the deal, US-based private equity firm Lovell Minnick Partners, which focuses on financial companies, and L&C’s majority shareholder, will take a majority stake in the combined group. 

Somers Ltd, the majority shareholder in Waverton since 2013, will continue as a “significant” shareholder in the new business, a statement from the firms said.

Guy McGlashan, chief executive of London & Capital, will be CEO of the enlarged group.

The deal puts together L&C, a business that has specialised in looking after clients with exposure to the US, either because they are US expats, or those investing and working in the US. It has also expanded its footprint into Europe. London-based L&C, which was created in 1986, has over £6 billion in AuM and 130 employees. 

Waverton was also founded in 1986, originating as J O Hambro Investment Management and has over £11 billion in AuM and 175 staff. After a series of moves it took on the Waverton brand in 2014. 

The deal shows that the hunt for scale remains a major driving force in M&A in the sector, Ray Soudah, chairman and founder of MilleniumAssociates, told this news service. His business is an independent firm specialising in M&A and strategic advice for the global financial services industry with a particular focus on wealth management.

"The merger  is another example of the pressure by shareholders to consolidate and obtain perceived cost saving synergies. However, there is a high risk of key staff and client defection, arguing against the notion of the bigger the better,” Soudah said.

US connections
Both organisations are registered with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, as well as in a number of other jurisdictions. With US expat clients traditionally finding it tough to gain access to financial services when overseas, having a SEC licence, for those firms which are able to acquire one, is a useful differentiator.

“Our shared commitment to a client-focused approach aligns seamlessly, and we believe this combination will elevate our ability to effectively scale while delivering unparalleled client service, investment opportunities, and wealth solutions,” McGlashan said. “Providing personalised service and retaining our entrepreneurial spirit has always been paramount, and the cultural fit with Waverton is perfect."

Nick Tucker, Waverton CEO, said: “This partnership coupled with the support of LMP will accelerate the growth of our combined business for the benefit of all shareholders and I am looking forward to working with Guy to achieve our vision for the merged business.”

Rothschild & Co advised London & Capital Group, Proskauer advised LMP and Waverton Investment Management Group was advised by Spencer House Partners.