Equity Trustees acquires ANZ Trustees

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April 10, 2014
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Listed financial services organisation Equity Trustees Limited (EQT) has agreed to acquire 100 per cent of ANZ Trustees (ANZT) for $150 million. The acquisition will be funded by an equity raising and will further enhance EQT’s position as a leading provider of trustee, investment and administration services.

The acquisition will bring a significant increase in earnings to EQT, an opportunity to further develop the company’s existing growth strategies and will see total funds under management and administration increase to approximately $40 billion. After the completion of the integration period of approximately 18 months, during which the projected integration costs will be expensed, it is expected that the acquisition will deliver at least $4 million of synergies (pre-tax).

Equity Trustees chairman Tony Killen said EQT had been reviewing acquisition opportunities for some time. ANZT was by far the highest quality opportunity the company had come across.

EQT and ANZ have entered into a strategic relationship for an initial period of five years, with the potential for renewal for a further five years. It is anticipated that this will provide benefits for each party: ANZ will refer clients to EQT for the provision of specialised trustee services and will work with EQT to develop a suite of banking solutions that can be offered to their traditional trustee clients. In addition, ANZ and EQT have agreed to explore other areas of mutual interest such as the development of solutions to meet the needs of ANZ clients who need access to aged care services.

“Equity Trustees and ANZT have similar histories and both share a commitment to long-term relationships. In addition to both businesses being headquartered in Melbourne, synergies already exist between the two businesses in relation to philanthropy and trust operations,” Mr Killen said.

“The two businesses combined will constitute Australia’s largest independent ASX listed company with a dedicated trustee services focus.”

Equity Trustees managing director Robin Burns said the transition for ANZT’s clients will be seamless, as the services offered by ANZ Trustees are also among the suite of services offered by EQT.

“Approximately 60 employees will join EQT in the next few months. They will be welcomed into an organisation that will allow them to continue to provide their valued services in a business that shares the same focus and commitment to clients.

“We will be undertaking a fully underwritten equity raising programme over the next few weeks to finance the acquisition. I am confident that it will be well supported by current shareholders and new investors. The focus for the business over the next 18 months will be to integrate the ANZT business into the existing operation, as well as continue the organic growth and development projects already under way,” Mr Burns said.

“The acquisition of ANZT significantly increases EQT’s scale and reach and materially improves our ability to compete and to provide quality trustee and other services in today’s complex and ever-changing financial environment,” Mr Killen concluded.

Equity Trustees Limited (EQT) is a publicly listed company that provides a range of financial services to corporate and private clients. Its businesses include asset management, distribution, responsible entity appointments, private client wealth management, and corporate and personal superannuation.

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For more information contact:

Robin Burns – Phone: 03 8623 5201

10 April 2014