Close Brothers Group

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Close Brothers Group plc
Type Public (LSECBG)
Industry Investment Banking, Financial Services
Founded 1878
Headquarters London, United Kingdom
Key people Strone Macpherson, Chairman
Preben Prebenson, CEO
Jonathan Howell, Finance Director
Products Asset management, commercial banking, investment banking, investment management, mutual funds, prime brokerage
Revenue £582.9 million (2013)[1]
Operating income £163.1 million (2013)[1]
Net income £119.4 million (2013)[1]
Employees 2,500 (2011)
Website www.closebrothers.co.uk

Close Brothers Group plc is a British specialist financial services group based in the City of London. The company makes loans, trades securities and provides advice and investment management solutions to a wide range of clients. Close Brothers Group plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index.

History[edit]

Close Brothers was founded in 1878 by William Brooks Close who initially provided farm mortgages in Iowa and financed Alaska's first railway the White Pass and Yukon Route.[2] It was the subject of a management buy-out in 1978 and was first listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1984.[2]

In the 1980s and 1990s the company began a phase of significant expansion through the acquisition of a large number of specialist businesses which included Winterflood Securities in 1993,[3] Hill Samuel's Corporate Finance Division in 1996[4] and Rea Brothers in 1999.[5]

In March 2008 Close Brothers acquired UK short-term and bridging lender Commercial Acceptances Group for around £31m.[6]

In May 2009 it was announced that the corporate finance business was to be acquired by Daiwa Securities SMBC, a Japanese investment banking venture, leaving Close Brothers focused on capital markets, securities trading, lending and investment management solutions.[7]

Operations[edit]

The groups operations are focused on corporate clients, institutional investors and asset management clients.

Banking Operations[edit]

Close Brothers’ Banking division provides specialist lending to small and medium-sized businesses and individuals across a diverse range of asset classes, and also offers deposit taking services. Close Brothers Seydler, a securities subsidiary, offers security deposit business services to corporate clients.

Close Brothers Invoice Finance[edit]

Close Brothers Invoice Finance (formerly known as Close Invoice Finance) is another subsidiary company of Close Brothers.[8] It was founded in 1984, when the Close Brothers Group acquired a small, Yeovil-based factoring company; Century Factors.[2] In 1993 Century Factors was re-named Close Invoice Finance Limited[2] and today the division works with over 1,000 clients across the UK, Ireland and Germany.[2]

In May 2009, Close Brothers Invoice Finance acquired Ulster Factors; the factoring business of Ireland’s longest running invoice finance company. The acquisition was for an undisclosed sum.[9]

In January 2010 the business also acquired the invoice financing loan book of GMAC Commercial Finance Limited for an estimated £98 million. The move saw 23 staff from GMAC move to Close Brothers Invoice Finance too.[10]

Securities[edit]

The Securities division provides trading services to retail brokers and institutions principally through Winterflood Securities and Close Brothers Seydler.

Winterflood[edit]

Winterflood, a leading market maker in the UK was acquired in 1993. Winterflood trades in relevant MTFs and major dark pools and covers nearly all LSE listed stocks, as well as Alternative Investment Market (AIM) and ICAP Securities and Derivatives Exchange.[11] WINS Investment Trusts operates as a subsidiary of Winterflood Securities. Winterflood's operations are based in the City of London.

Close Brothers Seydler[edit]

The Frankfurt based Close Brothers Seydler Bank AG is the group's Continental European and MENA securities business. It provides market making, brokerage and capital markets services to listed and non-listed companies. Its trading desks handle over 2,200 international specialist accounts and trade over 800 bonds.[12] Trading services in all available bonds are offered including corporate, government, high-yields, convertibles, straight and covered bonds.[13] The firm is the largest market-maker in Germany by number of mandates.[14] Close Brothers Seydler Bank AG is a market leader in the origination of debt and equity in Germany, specializing in high yield bonds. The firm was elected Best Bookrunner in German High Yield SME bonds in 2011[15] and 2012[16] by Bond Magazine. Close Brothers Seydler was also listed as one of the Top 10 European brokers by Wall Street Journal in 2013.[17] Its subsidiary Close Brothers Seydler Research AG covers more than 120 public listed companies.[18]

Asset Management[edit]

The Asset Management division provides a full range of advice, investment management and self-directed services to private, institutional and corporate clients and professional advisers.

Other[edit]

Close Brothers provides financial services to the UK Armed Forces through Forces Financial, providing credit cards and mortgages.

References[edit]

External links[edit]