Canaccord slashes wealth management division
News from Toronto Star:

Canaccord Financial Inc. will shut 16 laggard branches in its Canadian wealth management unit as it tries to rev up profits at the division.

At the same time, Canaccord announced plans to acquire a boutique wealth management firm in the U.K.

The outlets slated for closure account for half of the number of branches across Canada.

But they amount to just 16 per cent of the $ 13.1 billion of assets the division manages for clients, the Toronto-based company said in a release Monday. The firm will record a $ 11.5 million charge in its fiscal second quarter.

“We believe that these two corporate actions should be positives for the company over the longer term as they expand the firm’s fee-based wealth management capabilities while reducing overhead from under-producing domestic branches,” analyst Joel Jeffrey of Keefe, Bruyette, and Woods wrote in a report.

Canaccord shares fell 34 cents to close at $ 5.76 on the Toronto Stock Exchange. In February, 2011, the shares traded in the $ 15-range.

The branch closures did not come as a surprise.

Canaccord is one of the last remaining independent full-service brokerage firms in Canada in a time when the stock market has been dominated by volatility and poor returns.

Stock market uncertainty prompts retail and institutional investors to pull their money out of the market and sit on…………… continues on Toronto Star

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Providence Equity sells management firm stake-source
News from Chicago Tribune:

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Media-focused buyout firm Providence Equity Partners has sold minority stakes in the company that manages its funds to investors in a deal that will help propel expansion.

The Providence, Rhode Island-based buyout firm sold a stake of less than 10 percent in its management company to two longtime limited partners, Chief Executive Jonathan Nelson said in a letter to investors that was seen by Reuters.

The investors are a U.S. pension fund and a sovereign wealth fund, said a person familiar with the matter who asked not to be named because the matter is confidential.

The sale of minority stakes provides permanent capital that Providence will use to grow and invest in its business, and the firm may accept additional small passive investments in the future for similar purposes, Nelson said in the letter.

Providence declined to comment.

Providence is among private equity firms that have chosen a private placement of the general partner, instead of an initial public offering, as a way to raise capital.

CVC Capital Partners Ltd has sold a 10 percent stake of the firm to a group of investors, a source familiar with the situation told Reuters last week.

Some of the more diversified alternative asset managers have taken the IPO route. Carlyle Group LP was the latest major private equity firm to pursue a…………… continues on Chicago Tribune

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