Equity Trustees to buy ANZ Trustees for $150m

Equity Trustees Limited to acquire ANZ Trustees.

Equity Trustees Limited will acquire ANZ Trustees Limited from the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group for $150 million, just months after it was outbid in the race for Trust Co.

Equity Trustees is Australia’s largest independent trustee services company and the ANZ said its trustee business is a natural fit for them in a consolidating sector.

Equity Trustees had earlier asked for its shares to be placed in a trading halt pending news of a capital raising.

The firm said its acquisition of ANZ Trustees will be funded by a capital raising of about $123 million at $17 per share via a 3-for-4 fully underwritten non-renounceable entitlement offer, as well as a placement of approximately $37 million to professional investors at an underwritten floor price of $17.00 per new share.

The placement and the entitlement offer is fully underwritten by Baillieu Holst and Credit Suisse.

Equity Trustees said the purchase price represents a transaction multiple of 10 times earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) and it will acquire the majority of the current ANZ Trustee business.

ANZ said separately it will retain its philanthropic advice, estate planning and certain other capabilities and the gain on the sale would be invested in growth and efficiency initiatives. The gain will be booked in the second quarter.

Equity Trustees said it would offer employment to current ANZ Trustees staff on terms no less favourable. The deal is expected to be finalised in early July 2014.

Late last year, Equity Trustees lost out in a bidding war for Trust Co, which was bought by Perpetual for $250m.