Close Brothers Group

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Close Brothers Group plc
Traded asLSECBG
IndustryFinancial Services
Founded1878; 140 years ago (1878)
FounderWilliam Brooks Close
HeadquartersLondon, EC2
United Kingdom
Key people
Mike Biggs, Chairman
Preben Prebensen, CEO
Jonathan Howell, Finance Director
ProductsMerchant Banking, Securities, Wealth Management
Revenue£765.6 million (2017)[1]
£258.6 million (2017)[1]
£191.2 million (2017)[1]

Close Brothers Group plc is a UK merchant banking group, providing lending, deposit taking, wealth management and securities trading.

The Banking division provides lending to small businesses and individuals. They also offer deposit taking services to UK businesses and individuals. In Securities, they provide trading services in the UK through Winterflood, a market-maker. Close Brothers Asset Management provides a range of financial advice, investment management and on-line investing services. Close Brothers employs over 3,000 people, principally in the UK. They are listed on the London Stock Exchange and are a member of the FTSE 250.


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] By 2016 their loan book had grown to over £6 billion.[3]

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,[4] Hill Samuel's Corporate Finance Division in 1996[5] and Rea Brothers in 1999.[6]

In March 2008 Close Brothers acquired UK short-term and bridging lender Commercial Acceptances Group for around £31m.[7] 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.[8]



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.[9]

Close Brothers has a number of specialist businesses which include:

  • Asset-based lending
  • Asset finance
  • Aviation and marine
  • Braemar finance
  • Brewery rentals
  • Broker finance
  • Commercial vehicle hire
  • Insurance premium finance
  • Invoice finance
  • Leasing
  • Motor finance
  • Professional seceruties
  • Property finance
  • Retail finance
  • Technology services[10]


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]

Close Brothers disposed of Close Brothers Seydler Bank AG (“Seydler”), its securities business in Germany, to Oddo et Cie in 2014.[12]

Asset Management[edit]

Close Brothers Asset Management provides a financial planning and investment service to business owners, professionals, retires and high net worth individuals. They have financial planners based throughout the UK and offices in London, Manchester, Edinburgh, Bristol, Glasgow, Gatwick, Northwich and Newcastle.[13]


  1. ^ a b c "Annual Report 2017" (PDF). Close Brothers. Retrieved 23 March 2018.
  2. ^ a b Close Brothers History Archived 2008-06-30 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ "Modern Merchan Banking". Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  4. ^ "Winterflood Home - Winterflood Securities". Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  5. ^ Era ends as Hill Samuel loses its deal-makers The Independent, 1 June 1996
  6. ^ The Independent: City People The Independent, 2 August 1999
  7. ^ "City A.M. - Business With Personality". Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  8. ^ "Login". Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  9. ^ "Close Brothers' lending still healthy". Investors Chronicle. 27 September 2016. Retrieved 16 April 2016.
  10. ^ "Close Brothers' Book of Modern Merchant Banking". Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  11. ^ "Winterflood Securities Ltd - Markets Covered". Retrieved 2013-07-29.
  12. ^ "Disposal of Close Brothers Seydler Bank AG" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-10-20.
  13. ^ "Close Brothers' offices". Retrieved 28 April 2017.

External links[edit]