Last updated: 11:36 / Monday, 19 July 2021
To close in Q1 2022

Santander Acquires Amherst Pierpont, a U.S. Fixed-Income Broker Dealer

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  • The operation will take place through the purchase of its parent holding company, Pierpont Capital Holdings LLC, for 600 million dollars
  • It is expected to close by the end of the first quarter of 2022, subject to regulatory approvals
  • “This acquisition is consistent with our customer focused strategy and our commitment to profitable growth in the USA"

Banco Santander has announced that its U.S. holding company, Santander Holdings USA, has reached an agreement to acquire Amherst Pierpont Securities, a market-leading fixed-income broker dealer. The operation will take place through the purchase of its parent holding company, Pierpont Capital Holdings LLC, for approximately 600 million dollars.

In a press release, the bank has revealed that, with this transaction, Amherst Pierpont will become part of Santander Corporate & Investment Banking (Santander CIB) global business line. It is expected to close by the end of the first quarter of 2022, subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.

“This acquisition is consistent with our customer focused strategy and our commitment to profitable growth in the USA. It complements our product offerings and capabilities, allowing us to strengthen our relationships with our corporate and institutional clients", Ana Botín, Santander Group executive chairman, said.

In her view, the new team brings a successful track record and experience in delivering value for their clients. "We look forward to incorporating their many strengths into our very successful and growing CIB organization", she concluded.

Amherst Pierpont is an independent broker-dealer based in the U.S., with a premier fixed-income and structured product franchise. It was designated a primary dealer of U.S. Treasuries by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in 2019 and is currently one of only three non-banks to hold that designation. It has approximately 230 employees serving more than 1,300 active institutional clients from its headquarters in New York and offices in Chicago, San Francisco, Austin, other US locations and Hong Kong.

The bank believes that the operation enhances Santander CIB’s infrastructure and capabilities in market making of US fixed income capital markets, provides a platform for self-clearing of fixed income securities for the group globally, grows its institutional client footprint, and expands its structuring and advisory capabilities for asset originators in the real estate and specialty finance markets.

The combined platform will also have strong capabilities in corporate debt and securities finance across the US and emerging markets. The acquisition creates a comprehensive suite of fixed income and debt products and services that will drive deeper and more valuable relationships across its respective client bases.

Joe Walsh, Amherst Pierpont's CEO, pointed out that Santander Group is one of the world’s "most respected" financial institutions and "an ideal partner" for their growing franchise. "With Santander’s global reach we will be able to significantly expand our product offering, grow our client base and increase the level of service we can provide to our clients", he added.

The broker dealer has generated attractive returns, with an average return on equity (RoE) of approximately 15% since 2016. In 2020 it generated a RoE of 28% and an estimated return on risk weighted assets of 3%. Its acquisition is expected to be almost 1% accretive to group earnings per share and generate a return on invested capital of 11% by year 3 (post-synergies), with a -9 basis point impact on group capital at closing.

The press release has revealed that Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz and WilmerHale served as legal advisors to Santander in connection with the transaction. Meanwhile, Barclays served as financial advisor to Amherst Pierpont, and Shearman&Sterling as legal advisor.

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