Morningstar to Acquire Wealth Management Platform Provider Praemium’s U.K. and International Business

by | Dec 21, 2021

Fast-growing wealth management platform brings advisers choice and efficiency, enabling better advice for investors

Morningstar  and Praemium Limited have announced this morning that they have reached an agreement for Morningstar to acquire 100% of Praemium’s operations in the United Kingdom, Jersey, Hong Kong, and Dubai. The consideration for the transaction will comprise cash of £35 million, subject to completion adjustments.

“Praemium has a fast-growing U.K. and international business and a talented team we look forward to welcoming to Morningstar,” said Daniel Needham, president of wealth management solutions for Morningstar. “Technology is playing a larger role in everyone’s lives and expectations for how companies deploy it are evolving quickly. Advisers and the investors we jointly serve are no exception, and Praemium’s digital-first capabilities will allow us to reduce friction, lower costs, provide more choice, and improve efficiency for advisers. This gives advisers time back to deliver better advice, empowering investor success.”

Across its U.K. and international business, Praemium offers proprietary, friction-free SaaS-based technology and services that allow fee-based advisers to outsource key elements of the advice workflow. Its platform is used by nearly 500 independent financial advisers and provides access to investment lineups to serve end clients The end-to-end solution from Praemium will add to Morningstar’s existing data, fund profiles, portfolio analytics, and investment management capabilities available to advisers, creating a complete experience designed to empower investor success at scale. Praemium and Morningstar will work together to ensure a smooth transition for customers and employees.

Praemium U.K. and International Managing Director Mark Sanderson said, “The focus throughout the deal process has been on finding a new owner that is the right fit for us and the right fit for our customers. We wanted a committed parent with a long-term view and the resolve to uphold our best-in-class platform experience, free from customer disruption. We were looking for the enthusiasm and drive to continue the Praemium growth story. We know with this proposed deal with Morningstar, we can confidently say we have found the perfect fit.”

Melbourne-based Praemium Limited previously announced its plans to focus its financial and leadership resources on its domestic growth trajectory in the Australian platform market and to sell its international business to a growth buyer. The transaction unlocks capital and is a strong endorsement of the quality of Praemium’s platform and technology.

Praemium CEO Anthony Wamsteker said, “We are delighted Morningstar, a global firm of outstanding stature has chosen to acquire our international business. Morningstar will bring its global footprint and investment scale to better serve the interests of international clients and better advance the career opportunities of our international employees.”

The acquisition comes at a time when wealth management platforms are experiencing significant growth. According to The Lang Cat, platform assets in the U.K. alone have doubled in the last five years exceeding £500 billion, driven by adviser demand for scalability, digitisation, and portfolio flexibility.

Completion of the Transaction remains subject to regulatory approval from the Financial Conduct Authority in the United Kingdom and the Jersey Financial Services Commission in Jersey, and other customary conditions. Morningstar and Praemium expect to complete the transaction during Q2 or Q3 2022.

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