Rathbone’s advisor acquisition hits H1 profits


Rathbone Brothers acquisition of the IFA network Vision Independent Financial Planning businesses has seen its profits before tax fall 28.3 per cent to £22.8m in H1 2016 compared to £31.8m a year earlier.

Underlying profit before tax fell 5.1 per cent from £37.2m to £35.3m.

The £18m acquisition was announced in October last year.

“Although our outlook is cautious, Rathbones will remain alert to acquisition opportunities that fit with our culture and philosophy,” chief executive Philip Howell said in a statement.

Funds under management were up 4.8 per cent from £29.2bn to £30.6bn.

The asset manager’s Global Opportunities and Ethical Bond funds led inflows, which helped boost the unit trusts business, where funds under management were up 6.5 per cent to £3.3bn compared to £3.1bn at the end of December.

The report says the year’s first half was defined by political and macroeconomic factors, with investment management teams facing turbulent trading conditions, which was compounded by Brexit.

“Whilst turbulent market conditions and planned expenditure have impacted profitability, we continue to pursue our growth plans. In an eventful first half, our investment teams have worked hard to ensure that client communications are timely and insightful,” Howell says.

Rathbones says for the medium term it continues towards fee-based income. Fee income increased 12.1 per cent to £87.1 million in the first half of 2016 compared to £77.7 million last year.

The asset manager pointed out its Glasgow office, opened in May 2015, had secured £250m funds under management in just over a year of operation.

It added that its plans to move into new London office space at Finsbury Circus were on track for Q1 2017.