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Killingbeck unveils WH Ireland blueprint after Compton shock

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Killingbeck unveils WH Ireland blueprint after Compton shock

WH Ireland’s new chief is targeting acquisitions in the north-west as he forges ahead with growth plans following the shock departure of Paul Compton last month.

Richard Killingbeck was handed the chief executive post after Compton made a sudden exit in December, with reports suggesting he was being investigated over his personal share dealings by the Financial Services Authority. Killingbeck had worked as head of private wealth management at WH Ireland since joining from Credit Suisse in September 2012.

In the weeks following Compton's exit, the firm's Cardiff office was hit by a string of departures, as revealed by Wealth Manager.

In an interview with the Manchester Evening News, Killingbeck reiterated many of Compton’s plans laid out to Wealth Manager last autumn, including the acquisition of regional businesses. Last year WH Ireland doubled its office count  after acquiring the assets of failed stockbroker Pritchard.

Killingbeck also said he would work to grow WH Ireland’s corporate finance arm, and wants to assets under management on the wealth side to double to £3 billion over the next three years – a somewhat lower figure than the £5 billion eyed by Compton.

‘The company has gone through a lot of upheaval but I am looking forward to providing continuity and stability,’ he told the paper.

‘We will be looking to grow both our private wealth management and corporate finance sides of the business in the region, by acquiring individuals and teams, and through organic development.’

Although WH Ireland switched its registered head office from Manchester to London last year, in a move Compton described as keeping the business relevant, Killingbeck said the ‘engine room’ of the business remained in Manchester.

‘I’m very much aware of the heritage and north west focus of the business and am very keen to build on that.’

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