GOLD trader Sharps Pixley has been sold to metals dealer Ross Norman.
Norman, a director at metal news website Fastmarkets and former trader at the London Bullion Market, is understood to have bought the company in order to sell gold ingots and coins to small-scale investors.
He said he hoped to revive the Sharps Pixley brand, after current owner Deutsche Bank stopped using the name when it acquired the firm in 1994.
Norman is understood to be in talks with several UK banks and building societies about enabling customers to buy small quantities of gold through ATMs and other channels.
Sharps Pixley was formed in 1740, and was one of the five original gold brokers in London that used to set the daily price of gold.
Norman is known for his accurate forecasts on the price of gold, as a member of the London Bullion Market Association.
Small-scale investors have flocked to gold and other commodities recently after the uncertainty of the credit crunch and eurozone sovereign debt crisis.
Neither Deutsche Bank nor Fastmarkets were available for comment yesterday.