Swiss asset manager Vontobel has agreed to purchase the Lombard Odier US private clients portfolio.
The deal involves the sale of Lombard Odier’s discretionary and advisory wealth management operations for US-based clients by Vontobel through an asset transfer.
Under the agreement, Vontobel will also acquire Lombard Odier’s US-based brokerage private clients who intend to switch to a wealth management or advisory relationship.
The clients will now be advised by Vontobel Swiss Wealth Advisors (VSWA), a subsidiary of Vontobel that develops solutions for US and Canadian investors.
At present, Lombard Odier oversees CHF600m on behalf of US-based private wealth management clients and CHF600m for private brokerage clients through a Montreal-based subsidiary. Vontobel will now integrate the subsidiary into VSWA in New York.
Vontobel Wealth Management head Georg Schubiger said: “North America is one of our focus markets in which we intend to achieve above-average growth. With the acquisition of Lombard Odier’s discretionary and advisory wealth management business with US-based clients, we are supporting our organic growth in this region.”
The deal, whose financial terms were not revealed, is expected to close in the first half of next year. Vontobel will finance the acquisition using its own funds.
The two parties have also signed a cooperation agreement, under which Lombard Odier will recommend Vontobel to future US-based private clients looking for a SEC-registered Swiss wealth management solution.
Lombard Odier managing partner Frédéric Rochat said: “Scale and client proximity are critical to the success of today’s private banks, especially in a highly competitive market. Combining our forces is also in the best interest of our clients and our colleagues.
“They will have the opportunity to join an established and sizeable private banking franchise with solid Swiss roots for which North America is a core strategic market.”