Premier Miton pulls out of talks with River and Mercantile

By Abigail Townsend

Date: Thursday 13 Jan 2022

Premier Miton pulls out of talks with River and Mercantile

(Sharecast News) - Premier Miton Group has pulled out of talks to acquire River and Mercantile Group, the AIM-listed asset manager confirmed on Thursday.
Premier Miton first announced in November that it had approached the board of RMG to explore potentially buying the business, subject to the completion of the Solutions business sale to Schroders. RMG announced the £230m sale of its Solutions arm in October.

At the time, Premier said it believed the scale and cultural alignment of the two firms would deliver a "a balanced and resilient business across a diversified product offering".

However, on Thursday it announced that talks how now come to an end and that it would not be making an offer.

Chief executive Mike O'Shea said: "We have concluded that there are insufficient commercial merits for our shareholders to make a formal proposal for the acquisition of RMG.

"We wish the employees at RMG well for their future, and we look forward with confidence to pursuing our own strategic plans for organic growth while at the same time exploring tactical and strategic opportunities."

Discussions between RMG and rival bidder AssetCo remain ongoing, however. The AIM-listed acquisition vehicle is chaired by Martin Gilbert, the former joint chief executive of Standard Life Aberdeen, now trading as Abrdn, and current deputy chair of RMG.

Under the Takeover Code, AssetCo - which focuses on investment and wealth management firms - has until 18 January to make a firm offer for RMG or walk away.

RMG said: "The board's focus is on completing the sale of Solutions to Schroders, implementing the planned return of £180m to shareholders and developing RMG into a specialist asset manager." It added that shareholders would be provided with a "broad update" on its post-sale strategy in the spring.

As at 1200 GMT, shares in Premier Miton were down 3% at 190.25p, while RMG shares were largely flat at 302.0p, having touched a low of 290.4p earlier in the session. AssetCo was off 1% at 1,529.0p.


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