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Consolidation on horizon

Grace hints at more deals as assets grow

Adrian GraceAegon UK’s chief executive Adrian Grace is looking to build on a year of consolidation and growth.

Platform assets for the UK business now total £117 billion, against £13.4bn at the end of 2016.

Mr Grace said the strong performance of the business led to earnings of £22m in Q4, up by 94% over the last year to £109m.

He said the momentum in the platform business is a function of a number of factors, but crucially the ongoing support of the adviser community.

“Advisers have responded well to our commitment to invest in the platform services which are central to their businesses.”

Mr Grace hinted at more acquisitions. Speaking to a trade publication he said: “The reality is there are too many platforms in the market, there isn’t enough capacity to service them all. We’ve been very clear that scale and efficiency are key drivers to the profitability of a platform.

“Our view is that the market will consolidate. We’re very eager to be one of those consolidators. If you don’t have a certain size, you don’t have the budget to be able to invest in the user interface.”

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