Bridgepoint supports management buyout of AFP

Bridgepoint is backing a management buyout of Appleby Fiduciary & Administration Business, a global trust, corporate and fund services company. No financial terms were disclosed.


Appleby Fiduciary & Administration Business (or ’AFB’), a global trust, corporate and fund services group, is to be backed by Bridgepoint in a primary management buyout from Appleby Group for an undisclosed sum.

The company is a multi-jurisdictional business which provides trust and corporate services to a wide range of clients across the globe, administering over 10,000 structures for almost 6000 clients from nine locations. The business has three core service lines: Corporate Administration, Trust Administration and Fund Services.

In corporate administration, clients range from large multinational corporations from all sectors, to individual holding companies and SPVs established for holding investments such as real estate. Trust administration involves AFB establishing trust structures and then providing day to day services such as acting as trustee, record keeping, assisting with succession planning. Clients include high net worth individuals, corporations and financial institutions. In fund services, AFB advises and assists in the launch and incorporation of funds. This can include fund accounting, valuations, secretarial services, regulatory and compliance services.

Farah Ballands, Chief Executive of AFB, said:
“This is a really exciting step for our business, and the management team is delighted that we will be partnering with Bridgepoint. With Bridgepoint’s support and expertise in growing businesses successfully, we will be able to develop a greater range of products and services for our clients. The Appleby Group has provided us with a solid foundation and enabled us to grow to the size, reach and scale that we enjoy today, but now is the right time to accelerate our growth plans.”

William Paul, partner and head of Bridgepoint’s financial services team, said:
“AFB is an exciting platform with a reputation for high quality, client-centric services, and the expertise to deal with the complex needs of its clients. It brings significant opportunity as a standalone business to accelerate its growth organically and via acquisition, in what remains a strongly growing market.”

Key attractions of the business include its favourable historic earnings growth, strong new business flows, the opportunity for expansion through selective acquisitions in a fragmented market, as well as AFB’s leading positions in growing, niche areas such as employee benefit trusts in Jersey, the insurance market in Bermuda and collateralised loan obligations in the Cayman Islands.

Bridgepoint estimates that the global market for trust, corporate and fund services will grow at c.7% per annum, driven by increases in private wealth, foreign direct investment/trade flows and increasing regulation.

This investment was made by Bridgepoint’s €4 billion Bridgepoint Europe V buyout fund. Completion of the transaction is subject to certain conditions, including regulatory and legal approvals. Debt for the transaction was provided by: Bank of Ireland, ING, Société Générale and Unicredit.

Advisers involved in this transaction included:
For Bridgepoint: KPMG / Wyvern Partners (Corporate Finance), Stikeman Elliott (Commercial / Regulation ), KPMG (Accounting, Tax/Structuring), Intuitus (IT), Marsh (Insurance), Travers Smith (legal).
For Appleby: PWC (M&A, Commercial and Financial), Macfarlanes (legal), Kinetic (Compliance).
For Management: Liberty Corporate Finance (M&A), Dickson Minto (legal), PwC (Tax).