Alliance Trust to Shutter Private Equity Unit

Alliance Trust, a $5.95 billion investment firm, plans to shut down its private equity unit to focus on its stock and bond investments, Reuters reported. The unit, Alliance Trust Equity Partners, manages about 110 million pounds ($176.8 million) in funds and investments.

(Reuters) – The 3.7 billion pound ($5.95 billion) Alliance Trust, which recently came under attack from activist hedge fund Laxey Partners, plans to shut down its private equity unit to focus on its stock and bond investments.

The 123-year-old investment company, which will drop out of the FTSE 100 later this month, said in a statement on Monday that it will shut Alliance Trust Equity Partners, which runs 110 million pounds ($176.8 million) in funds and direct investments and employs six people.

“We are focusing on delivering on our investment performance and that’s the reason we’re closing the private equity business,” a spokesman said.

Last month Isle of Man-based Laxey said in letters to the trust and to shareholders that Alliance should set up a mechanism to limit its shares’ discount to net asset value and change the voting process in its savings scheme.

($1=.6222 Pound)

(Reporting by Laurence Fletcher; Editing by Jon Loades-Carter)