By Geoff Percival
The estimated €150m takeover of the country’s second largest stockbroking firm, Goodbody, by a consortium of Chinese strategic investors, has been confirmed.
Goodbody, the longest-established stockbroking firm in the State, is understood to have been in advanced talks over its future ownership since the start of the year. Its takeover, which requires regulatory approval, is expected to close by the end of the year with the Chinese consortium taking 100% ownership.
Goodbody is currently 51% owned by Kerry-based financial services group Fexco, with staff and management controlling the remaining 49%. The firm will continue to be regulated by the Central Bank, will retain its brand and staff, will continue to be headquartered in Dublin, and will remain run by managing director Roy Barrett and his current senior management team.
State-backed Chinese investment holdings company Zhongze Group heads up the buying consortium; supported by privately owned investor Pioneer Century and Zhongze’s financial advisor JIC Trust, an asset-management company wholly owned by China’s sovereign wealth fund CIC.
Goodbody’s purchase follows Cantor Fitzgerald’s recent purchase of Merrion Capital and Euronext’s purchase of the Irish Stock Exchange, from which Goodbody and its four co-owning brokers shared in the windfall.
Goodbody’s new owners will use the firm as a platform from which to expand internationally, they said.