Gilbert’s AssetCo buys Edinburgh asset manager to bolster Scottish business
Martin Gilbert’s asset management vehicle AssetCo has snapped up Scottish firm SVM Asset Management Holdings for £10.7m as it looks to broaden its footprint north of the border.
The deal, announced today, will see AssetCo acquire Edinburgh-based SVM via a mixture of £1.7m cash and £9m in loan notes, which can be converted into fully paid ordinary shares in the newly combined firm.
The tie-up between the two firms comes after AssetCo bought Edinburgh firm Saracen Fund Managers last year, and Gilbert said today the move to buy SVM would now boost AssetCo’s footprint in Edinburgh.
“We are immensely proud to be building an asset management hub in Edinburgh that, over time, will broaden its client base across the UK and beyond,” he said in a statement.
“SVM is a well-regarded fund management firm, with a recognised investment style and a very strong investment track record.”
He added that the firm would now be “core to AssetCo’s ambitions”.
SVM currently has around £586m of assets under management (AuM), including five open-end funds. The firm also manages the SVM UK Emerging Fund plc, a £6.8m investment trust listed on the London Stock Exchange.
The asset manager generated revenues of £4.3m and pre-tax profits of £2m for the financial year ended 31 December 2021, with net assets of £14m at the end of last year.
Managing Director and Chief Investment officer of SVM Colin McLean, who is joint majority owner with co-founder Margaret Lawson and a family trust, will now become a director of AssetCo’s Scottish business, overseeing the transition for SVM’s clients to the new firms.
Lawson, UK investment director at SVM, will continue in her role managing UK equity portfolios alongside Neil Veitch, Global and UK investment director, and Hugh Cuthbert, European investment manager.
McLean said today that the backing of AssetCO will allow the firm to build on its existing clients as well as “broadening [its] client base and growing assets”.
AssetCo posted a loss in the first half of the year last week after an acquisitive push in the past six months which saw it snap up asset manager River & Mercantile Group.