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Succession handed £100m acquisition war chest

National advice firm Succession Wealth has been given access to over £100 million from private equity backers to fund a raft of advice firm acquisitions, New Model Adviser® can reveal

Succession handed £100m acquisition war chest

[UPDATED] National advice firm Succession Wealth has been given access to over £100 million from private equity backers to fund a raft of advice firm acquisitions, New Model Adviser® can reveal.

In 2014 Inflexion Private Equity purchased 50.1% of shares in the group to provide funding for Succession's acquisitions of its member firms.

At the time then chief executive Simon Chamberlain had set a goal of buying 50 firms by the end of 2017, accumulate £7 billion assets for the platform business and float or sell by the end of 2018.

However Succession has been through upheaval in subsequent years.  Chamberlain died in March 2017 and the business is now being led by James Stevenson. Succession has not floated or been sold, but is on track to pass £10 billion of assets by the end of 2019, and is acquiring its 50th firm this year.

Succession, which operates as an independent advice firm, has £7.75 billion of assets, a staff headcount of 600, and over 20,000 clients.

Now Inflexion and fellow private equity business Ares Capital are providing fresh funding to further Succession's national expansion ambitions.

In an interview with New Model Adviser® Succession’s group communications director Mark Stokes (pictured right) said the business had secured investment to fund a pipeline of further acquisitions. 

‘We’ve recently secured a funding line of £109 million in association with Inflexion and Ares Capital,’said Stokes. ‘We certainly will be buying more firms because this is one of the principle reasons for us raising further funds. However, we are only going to buy the right firms.

‘There are many businesses that want to sell right now, but we will continue to be selective. We have set ourselves an ambition to get to £10 billion assets under management with organic growth and acquisitions both playing their part.’

Historically firms joining Succession received shares as part of the acquisition deal, as well as cash. However, Stokes said new deals would be done mainly as a mix of cash and deferred cash considerations 'and less of that being shares'.

Stokes also outlined the sort of businesses Succession was looking for, which ranged from £150 million to £200 million to larger firms with assets in excess of £1 billion.

Stokes and Succession's wealth planner Mark Rogers added advisers will be trained to be closely aligned to the financial planning model set out by the Chartered Institute of Securities & Investments (CISI). Rogers is president of the CISI Birmingham committee. (The CISI took over the Institute of Financial Planning in 2015.)

The full interview with Stokes and Rogers is published today in New Model Adviser® magazine and will be available online soon.

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