Sanlam plans to expand its UK business by merging Sanlam Private Investments (SPI) division and Sanlam UK brands, Investment Week has reported.

Craig Massey, CEO of SPI, said that Sanlam UK will offer services similar to SPI business which includes advisory, wealth management and pensions.

Massey said that the timescale for the merger is yet to be decided.

"We run SPI and Sanlam UK and I think it would make sense that we end up with a single company brand and identity so there is no confusion in the marketplace," Massey said.

As part of the merger, the group is also planning to review its back-office functions to simplify the structure for investors.

"The front end will come last, once we are happy that we are able to pull the back offices together," Massey added.

Principal Investment Holdings was rebranded as SPI last year, and Sanlam has made several bolt-on acquisitions across the company as part of ambitious plans to expand nationally.

Massey said that as part of a satellite strategy SPI plans to open further offices across the UK, with administration and back office services run from a central base and investment managers in regional offices closer to clients.

This strategy will ensure that national expansion is affordable.

Since 2008, SPI’s assets under management have grown from £600 million to £2.2 billion, but Massey said while he is pleased with asset growth so far, the group must do more to establish better relationships with advisers.