River & Mercantile shareholders back AssetCo takeover

Investment manager River & Mercantile Group’s (RMG) shareholders have voted to approve AssetCo’s takeover of the firm.

Over 98% voted in favour of the proposed scheme of arrangement.

The deal remains subject to FCA approval and a Court sanction of the scheme.

The deal is expected to complete in the second half of this year.

River & Mercantile shareholders will receive 0.073 new AssetCo shares in exchange for each RMG share in the all-share acquisition deal.

This will leave River & Mercantile shareholders with over 41% of AssetCo shares at the close of the deal.

AssetCo, set up by Martin Gilbert – founder of Aberdeen Asset Management, will pay £98.8m for RMG. 

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Mr Gilbert has a long track record in asset and wealth management. He co-founded Aberdeen Asset Management in 1983 and was CEO from 1991 to 2017. In 2017 Aberdeen Asset Management merged with Standard Life to form Standard Life Aberdeen.

Mr Gilbert is also chairman of app-based robo adviser Revolut Ltd and Toscafund, deputy chairman of River and Mercantile Group and senior independent director of Glencore.

AssetCo said it will combine River & Mercantile with Saracen Fund Managers, an asset management firm that it already owns.

The firm also plans to launch products which invest in unquoted companies, especially those in the ESG space.

AssetCo was originally one of two firms in the running to acquire River & Mercantile. Rival Premier Miton withdrew from acquisition discussions earlier this month.

Premier Milton said it had concluded that there were insufficient commercial merits to make a formal acquisition proposal. 

Mr Gilbert was appointed chairman of investment firm AssetCo in March 2021 to spearhead its new acquisition strategy.

Other acquisitions made by the firm include a £27.8m stake in DFM and adviser platform Parmenion and ETF issuer Rize ETF.

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River & Mercantile shareholders back AssetCo takeover