Souter Investments sells Mobius Life to Phoenix

Brian Souter

Souter Investments — the family investment office of Stagecoach Group founder and chairman Brian Souter — said it reached an agreement to sell Mobius Life, a provider of investment administration services to UK pension schemes, to Phoenix Equity Partners.

Mobius Life was acquired in a management buy-out backed by Souter Investments and Manfield Partners in 2014.

Since acquisition, the business has grown assets under administration from £3 billion to £17 billion, and it now provides services to more than 550 institutional clients including pension scheme trustees, consultants and advisers, asset managers, and life insurance companies.

Souter has investments in about 30 unquoted companies.

Mobius Life CEO Adrian Swales said: “We are grateful to Souter for their support in helping us develop a robust and scalable platform solution that offers our pension scheme customers and their advisers clear benefits and the best outcomes.

“The investment by Phoenix sets us up for our next exciting phase of growth and demonstrates confidence in our business, senior management and wider team to continue our track record of outstanding performance.”

Souter Investments managing director Andy Macfie said: “Adrian and his team at Mobius Life have built a strong, market-leading business and a first-class, efficient and flexible independent platform for institutional corporate pension schemes.

“The strong growth in Mobius Life’s assets under administration and the widening range of clients Mobius Life serves underlines the attraction of the company’s wide range of investment services and tailored investment solutions. ”

Sandy Muirhead, Phoenix Equity Partners, said: “We are extremely excited at the prospect of working with Adrian and Mobius Life’s management team to take the business on to the next stage of its growth.

“Mobius Life has built an outstanding and unique position in the pensions market and, with the investment that we intend to make in its operational and distribution infrastructure, we see a clear opportunity for Mobius Life to increase its penetration of the institutional pension market and broaden its product offering whilst maintaining its best in class service levels.”

Souter Investments and Manfield Partners are being advised by Dentons and IMAS.

Phoenix Equity Partners is being advised by Addleshaw Goddard, Deloitte and Houlihan Lokey.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approval by the Prudential Regulation Authority and the Financial Conduct Authority