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Palatine-backed SMP Group makes international acquisition

Global professional and financial services group SMP has announced a deal to acquire RBC Corporate Services Hong Kong, a division of RBC Investor & Treasury Services. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval.

The transaction forms a key part of the firm’s global buy and build strategy, marking the third acquisition made by SMP since completing a management buyout backed by Palatine Private Equity in 2019.

SMP Group has grown into a leading international provider of fund administration and corporate and trust services. In total, the company now employs over 250 people across seven global offices, including the Isle of Man, Jersey, Switzerland, Malta, Hong Kong, Cayman Islands and the Bahamas.

SMP and RBC have a long history of working together to provide global solutions for private wealth structuring. SMP previously acquired RBC’s Bahamas and Cayman Island corporate services businesses in 2016 and 2017 respectively, delivering significant value for both the SMP Group and the client base. The Caribbean and Hong Kong businesses have continued to work closely together since these acquisitions.

The latest transaction will enhance and support SMP’s existing service offerings globally, enabling them to leverage RBC’s expertise and reputation in the Hong Kong market. The deal will also allow SMP to provide a more holistic offering for clients, bringing all international services under one roof.

The deal has been undertaken with the support of Palatine Private Equity, with additional debt funding from Apera Asset Management.

Andy Lees, partner at Palatine Private Equity, said: “SMP is a perfect example of how an effective buy and build strategy can operate. Since backing the business in 2019, we have already strengthened the Isle of Man office with the acquisition of Middleton Katz and seen significant expansion in Jersey through the strategic acquisition of Helm Trust. The latest transaction has further bolstered the firm’s global reach, enabling it to strengthen resources and better service the global client base. We’re continuing to look at options for further expansion and look forward to working closely with David and the team on delivering this.”

Hong Kong is an immensely important jurisdiction for us, in which we are driving impressive growth and raising the bar for internationally compliant corporate and private wealth services. This deal with RBC will accelerate our ambitious plans for the region, in a way that enhances our existing global service offering and brings an extended support network to clients. We’re extremely excited to start working with new colleagues and new clients alike.

David Hudson
Group CEO, SMP Group