KPMG agrees to sell pensions arm

Fri, 06 Dec 2019 | DIVISION SALE

Professional services network KPMG has announced that it has reached a conditional agreement to sell its pensions practice to Newco, in a private equity-backed MBO.

The deal is backed by private equity firm Exponent, along with KPMG’s 20 current pensions partners. All 20 partners and 500 staff currently employed by KPMG’s pensions business will transfer to the new business, which will be named Isio.

Andrew Coles, KPMG UK Head of Pensions, will transfer as part of the deal, becoming Newco’s chief executive.

KPMG has said that it will release further details regarding the deal upon its completion. While the deal value has not as yet been disclosed, KPMG’s pensions division has reportedly previously been valued in excess of £200 million.

KPMG’s own corporate finance team is advising it on the sale, Exponent is being advised financially by Deloitte, while Macfarlanes is acting as its legal advisor. Liberty Corporate Finance are advising KPMG’s pensions partners on financial issues, Addleshaw Goddard is their legal advisor.

Discussions over a sale of the unit began in June and a number of bidders submitted offers. KPMG said in October that it had reached advanced negotiations over the sale of the pensions advisory arm as it looked to restructure its business.

Exponent is reported to have seen off competition for the deal from companies including Duff & Phelps.

Bill Michaels, Chairman of KPMG, has sought to restructure the company in order to focus its business on core areas. The company is also currently in the midst of a £100 million cost-cutting process.

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