Azimut continues Australian expansion

Italy’s Azimut continues its business development plans in Australia with the acquisition of Wealthwise.

This acquisition is the ninth in a series that aims at consolidating the company’s wealth management business to retail, HNW and institutional clients in Australia and was concluded via Azimut’s subsidiary AZ Next Generation Advisory (AZ NGA).

The agreement includes a share swap of 49% of Wealthwise’s equity for AZ NGA shares and a progressive buy back of these shares over the next ten years.

The remaining 51% stake will be paid to the founding partners in cash over a period of two years.

Wealthwise has a team of 32 staff including 14 Financial Planners, six para-planners, and nine Client Service Officers.

It is responsible for €245m of funds under advice and provides a range of financial advisory services including investment and asset allocation advice, retirement planning, insurance, strategic financial planning advice, and aged care.

Wealthwise founders Jamie and Sheila Luxton have entered into long term contracts to ensure business continuity.

The total value of the transaction, considering both cash and share swap, entails a purchase price of around €6.2m.

Wealthwise operates under the Australian Financial Services License regime overseen by ASIC; the acquisition is not subject to the approval of the local authority.

Paul Barrett, AZ NGA CEO states: “We are delighted to welcome Wealthwise into the AZ NGA family of quality financial planning firms. Jamie, Sheila and the team have always been at the forefront of the financial planning profession in Perth and set a great example to the broader industry.

“Wealthwise has built a strong corporate business model whilst maintaining a caring and client-centric approach”.

Jamie Luxton said, “We are delighted to be partnering with such a forward looking organisation.

“We believe there will be substantially more opportunity to grow the business, but also to broaden the level of services we provide to our clients, and to develop the career paths and future opportunities for our very talented team.”

Pietro Giuliani (pictured), chairman and CEO of Azimut Holding, comments: “In the first two months of 2016 we have managed to consolidate profitable financial practices worth more than €336m led by talented professionals with a long and successful track record.

“Backed by our long term commitment and solid financials we will pursue our intention to create a strong Australian platform for the benefit of our clients and shareholders”.

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