Canada's Dundee to expand wealth management business

Reuters

By Euan Rocha

TORONTO, Jan 13 (Reuters) - Dundee Goodman Private Wealth, a unit of Dundee Securities Ltd, said on Monday a group of about 60 investment advisers and their staff are transferring to Dundee from Richardson GMP.

The move will greatly expand Dundee's wealth management unit, giving the firm more than 100 investment advisers across Canada, who manage portfolios worth over C$6 billion ($5.5 billion).

"This transaction marks a valuable addition to our growing wealth management business, thereby cementing our position as a strong and independently owned Canadian securities firm," Jonathan Goodman, chief executive of Dundee Capital Markets, said in a statement.

Under the agreement, Dundee will take over former Macquarie Private Wealth offices in Ottawa, Montreal and Victoria. A more limited transfer of investment advisers will take place from Richardson GMP offices in Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto to Dundee Goodman's offices in those cities.

Richardson GMP, in which financial services firm GMP Capital holds a non-controlling ownership interest, was expected to lose some investment advisers following its agreement to buy Macquarie Canada's Private Wealth unit for about C$132 million ($121.5 million) last September.

All the advisers transferring to Dundee joined Richardson GMP as part of its acquisition of Macquarie Private Wealth.

"We identified certain adviser businesses within Macquarie that were not a good fit with our business model," said Andrew Marsh, chief executive of Richardson GMP.

"We considered several options and are confident that this arrangement with Dundee offers the best outcome," Marsh said on a conference call. "We believe just as the Macquarie transaction was transformational for Richardson GMP, this deal is similarly transformational for Dundee Goodman Private Wealth."

Marsh said Dundee is paying Richardson GMP C$15 million as part of the deal, which will result in the transfer of about C$2 billion in assets under management across to Dundee.

Toronto-based Dundee said for now it remains focused on the integration of advisers coming across from Richardson GMP, and it does not plan to look at further acquisitions at this point.

"We are going to continue to focus on growth, but we are going to focus on this transaction first and foremost," John Cucchiella, the head of retail at Dundee Goodman, said on the conference call.

The transaction, which is subject to regulatory approvals, is expected to close in March.

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