Harwood Wealth has announced its intention to float on the AIM market.
Harwood Wealth was founded in 2001 by Neil Dunkley and Mark Howard as Compass Wealth Management. The group is now led by Wealth Manager cover star Alan Durrant (pictured) and Dunkley, who are joint chief executives.
The group has an 80-strong financial adviser team, with seven investment professionals managing over £1.25 billion in assets under influence.
The group's revenues for the year ending 31 October 2015 was £7.9 million and it has been on an acquisition spree, completing 37 to the end of October. The latest addition to the group has been Meon Valley Financial Planning, which it bought on 1 February.
Last year Harwood also acquired Wellian Investment Solutions, headed up by Eric Clapton. Clapton left the firm in following weeks, though stayed on in a consultancy role. He has since launched a consultancy firm Clapton Consulting.
N+1 Singer has been appointed as sole broker and nominated adviser to a listing hoped to raise £13.5 million, of which £10 million will be new equity capital. The proceeds are to be used for acquisitions and to cover infrastructure costs.
Harwood chairman Peter Mann told Wealth Manager: 'We are looking for small to medium advisory businesses with no specific size but we will not be doing just one big acquisition. I don’t think the listing will lead to a hiatus before our next acquisition, in fact it may act as an acceleration.
'In terms of geography, we do not want to limit ourselves to certain areas. It is more about the right culture with the right ownership. One of the hardest parts of acquisitions is the cultural integration.'
Durrant said: 'Following the retail distribution review the industry is undergoing significant structural change.
'Many financial advisory firms have strong client books but unworkable, fragmented models, rising regulatory costs and a need to outsource certain functions or to be acquired. All these factors create a significant opportunity for Harwood Wealth’s acquisitive growth strategy and the vertically integrated model.'