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December 3, 2020

Macquarie to scoop up US wealth manager Waddell & Reed for $1.7bn

By Amala Johney

Australian investment bank Macquarie Group has brokered a deal to buy US-based investment management firm Waddell & Reed Financial for $1.7bn.

Macquarie carried out the deal through its asset management arm Macquarie Asset Management.

The deal values Waddell & Reed shares at $25 each, which will be paid in cash.

The takeover is expected to boost Macquarie Asset Management’s AUM to more than $465bn.

Founded in 1937, Waddell & Reed offers investment and wealth management services across the US, through its subsidiaries.

The firm currently distributes investment products under the Ivy Investments brand and through independent financial advisers associated with it.

At the end of September 2020, Waddell & Reed’s asset management business had $68bn of AUM. The firm’s wealth management business had $63bn in assets under administration at the end of the same period.

Macquarie-LPL Financial deal

Moreover, upon deal completion, Macquarie agreed to sell Waddell & Reed’s wealth management platform to LPL Financial for $300m.

Concurrently, Macquarie will sign a long-term partnership with LPL. The tie-up will make Macquarie one of LPL’s top tier asset management partners.

The transaction has already been cleared by the boards of all the parties concerned. It now awaits the regulatory nod with completion anticipated in the middle of next year.

Comments:

Macquarie Asset Management head Martin Stanley said that the purchase of Waddell & Reed and partnership with LPL will significantly increase the firm’s ability to grow.

Waddell & Reed Financial CEO Philip Sanders said: “The long-term partnership between Macquarie and LPL as part of this transaction accelerates that transformation and ultimately will benefit our clients and independent financial advisers while delivering significant value to our stockholders.”

LPL Financial CEO and president Dan Arnold said: “Waddell & Reed advisers are highly experienced and well-respected throughout the industry. They are a terrific fit both culturally and strategically, and we welcome them to the LPL family. Looking ahead, we expect our capabilities and resources will benefit their practices and help them unlock additional value and growth.

“Additionally, we look forward to deepening our long-term partnership with Macquarie, which will help us preserve unique aspects of the Waddell & Reed adviser experience while also positioning us to explore additional long-term opportunities together.”

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