Comeback King in bid battle: Martin Gilbert launches his latest swoop 

Comeback fund king in bid battle: He’s been down, however by no means out and now Martin Gilbert has launched his latest swoop

City titan Martin Gilbert has been thrust right into a takeover battle as he tries to grab management of fund supervisor River and Mercantile.

The 66-year-old founding father of Aberdeen Asset Management has launched a bid for R&M by way of his funding automobile AssetCo.

However, he faces competitors from fund supervisor Premier Miton, which has made a competing supply for R&M.

Aberdeen Asset Management founder Martin Gilbert (pictured) has launched a bid for R&M by way of his funding automobile AssetCo

It is the latest twist in the eventful career of the person dubbed the City’s Comeback King.

A married father of three, Gilbert is a bon viveur identified for wining and eating at world discuss fest Davos and at shindigs he hosted on the Highland Games in Braemar.

But his sociable exterior co-exists with unstoppable ambition and a Houdini-like skill to flee from seemingly ruinous debacles. 

A takeover of R&M would mark a full-scale return to the Square Mile simply two years after he left his job as boss of finance big Standard Life Aberdeen.

Gilbert by his personal account jumped earlier than he was pushed after dropping out in a power-struggle with a rival government.

He is chairman of fintech agency Revolut and the hedge fund Toscafund in addition to serving as a senior non-executive director at commodities big Glencore.

A golf fanatic who has performed with former US president Donald Trump, he chairs Scottish Golf, the game’s nationwide governing physique. 

He can also be deputy chairman of R&M however has recused himself from the board for talks referring to the potential bid. R&M shares rose 8.8 per cent, or 25p, to 310p – giving it a price of £265million.

Gilbert’s AssetCo – which specialises in shopping for and working wealth administration corporations – already owns a 5.85 per cent stake in R&M, whereas Premier Miton holds 5 per cent. His swoop to take full management comes practically 4 many years after he arrange Aberdeen Asset Management in 1983.

He constructed the company right into a FTSE 100 big with greater than £300billion of financial savings earlier than merging it with Edinburgh-based financial savings big Standard Life in 2017.

Asset managers, which actively manage funds, have been bulking up in recent years to cut costs and fight off competition from rivals running passive, or index-tracking, funds

Asset managers, which actively handle funds, have been bulking up in latest years to chop prices and battle off competitors from rivals operating passive, or index-tracking, funds

Gilbert was joint chief government of the mixed business – now referred to as abrdn – till he stepped down in 2019, saying he wished to spare the chairman the embarrassment of firing him.

That was not the primary setback for Gilbert, who admits he was fortunate to outlive the ‘split capital’ funding belief scandal in the early 2000s which worn out the financial savings of 1000’s of small traders. 

He and his colleagues have been branded ‘sophisticated snake oil salesmen’ by MPs and Aberdeen got here to the brink of administration.

After leaving Standard Life Aberdeen, he took management of stock market-listed money shell AssetCo, which began life as a hearth engine leasing business.

Gilbert has a personal stake of 8.55 per cent and has already secured three acquisitions – together with Edinburgh-based funding home Saracen Fund Managers – and raised £25million from traders.

Asset managers, which actively take care of funds, have been bulking up in latest years to chop prices and battle off competitors from rivals operating passive, or index-tracking, funds which have decrease prices.

Any takeover of R&M is conditional on it finishing the £230million sale of its pensions business to Schroders. That would go away it with belongings of greater than £5billion.

AssetCo stated its business and that of R&M have been ‘highly complementary’ and a tie-up would ‘create significant value for the combined group’s purchasers, portfolio managers, workers and shareholders’. 

The different bidder, Premier Miton, stated it has been ‘assessing the merits of a combination with R&M over a period of time’ and {that a} deal would profit each corporations’ shareholders.

Both suitors added that ‘there can be no certainty’ {that a} agency supply for R&M will likely be made.

According to UK takeover guidelines, Premier Miton and AssetCo now need to desk agency presents for R&M by December 21 or stroll method.

Premier Miton shares have been down 3.7 per cent, or 7p, to 180p. Meanwhile, AssetCo shares have been flat.


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