Schroders Strikes £424 Million Deal For Cazenove

Mar 26 2013 | 1:19pm ET

Schroders yesterday agreed to buy Cazenove Capital for £424 million (US$646 million), a move that will unite two of London's oldest and most august asset and hedge fund managers.

Cazenove, which is though to boast the British royal family among its clients, will retain its name. "In combining with Schroders, we will create a pre-eminent independent private-banking and charities business in the U.K., with a  broader capability covering investment management, financial planning, deposit-taking and lending services," Cazenove CEO Andrew Ross said.

Clients of both firms will see no change in the personnel managing their money, Ross said. Savings of between £12 million and £15 million per year will not come from "the front office of our wealth management business or investment funds," Schroders CEO Michael Dobson said.

Private-banking seems to be at the heart of the deal; Schroders' private bank saw its pretax profit drop by half last year, and the merger will boost its private-banking assets under management by about three-quarters to £28 billion.

All told, the combined Schroders-Cazenove will have £230.7 billion in assets. The deal remains subject to the approval of Cazenove shareholders, who have been offered £1.35 per share. They have until April 19 to decide.

The deal is the largest in the British asset management industry since Henderson Global Investors acquired the ailing Gartmore Group two years ago.

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