Ashfords advises Craven Street Wealth on acquisition of Punter Southall Aspire’s financial planning division

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UK law firm Ashfords has advised wealth management client Craven Street Wealth on the acquisition of Punter Southall Aspire’s financial planning division. 

The deal, due to be completed at the end of February 2024, will increase Craven Street Wealth’s assets under management from £1.2 to £1.8 billion, increase staff numbers to 90, broaden the range of services it can offer clients and further widen its footprint in London and the South of England. 

Soondra Appavoo, the CEO of Craven Street Group, said: "The acquisition is the first book deal, as opposed to the acquisition of shares in another company, that Craven Street Wealth has entered into. Ashfords have expertly advised us on the associated transfer of clients, employees and records from Punter Southall to Craven Street Wealth. This is the third complex transaction we have worked on with Ashfords and we have valued the quality and responsiveness we have received."

The assets to be transferred as part of this business needed careful consideration, and particularly extensive due diligence was required in relation to the business’s IT systems and licences to enable Ashfords to advise on the migration of relevant data on completion.

The Ashfords deal team was led by Jocelyn Ormond, partner in the corporate team and Ed Hobbs, partner in the banking and finance team. The corporate team included Ross van de Velde, senior associate and solicitors Chelsey Noone and Rebecca French, and Ed was supported by solicitor Kerry Jarvis from the banking and finance team.

The transaction received further support from the financial services regulatory, commercial and IT, and data protection teams (overseen by Suzie Miles), as well as advice from the employment, tax and property teams.

Jocelyn Ormond said: “We were delighted once again to work with the impressive Craven Street Wealth team on this transaction. Business/asset purchase transactions always pose challenges in ensuring that it is clearly understood what assets are transferring and what risks the buyer is assuming, and conversely what liabilities and risks will stay with the seller. 

This was a relatively complicated business purchase, given the structure of the purchase price, the need for client consent to the novation of their agreements from Punter Southall to Craven Street Wealth, the associated regulatory considerations and Punter Southall’s requirements to protect its ongoing business activities in the financial services sector.”

Ashfords’ corporate team advises and negotiates on all legal aspects integral to successful corporate activities for businesses and their investors. The team was ranked Tier 1 in this year's Legal 500 in its relevant category, with Jocelyn Ormond recognised as a Leading Individual. Edd Hobbs was also recognised in the Up and Coming category in the Chambers 2024 results.

Craven Street Wealth, formed by Craven Street Group in 2021, is an award-winning team of independent Chartered financial and wealth planners, located across London, Kent, Sussex and the South-East.

For more information, please contact Jocelyn Ormond or visit our website.

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