Magazine article American Banker

Boston Private in $30M Deal to Add Heft with N.Y. Wealthy

Magazine article American Banker

Boston Private in $30M Deal to Add Heft with N.Y. Wealthy

Article excerpt

Boston Private Financial Holdings Inc. said Monday that it has a $30 million agreement to buy an 81% stake in KLS Professional Advisors Group Inc., a move intended to expand its New York operations.

The definitive purchase agreement would add to Boston Private's existing business in New York, an 80% interest in Dalton, Greiner, Hartman, Maher & Co. LLC, a small-cap value investment manager. KLS is a wealth management firm with about $2.7 billion of client assets under advisement. It specializes in investment management, insurance, retirement planning, estate planning, and income tax planning services.

Walter M. Pressey, the president and chief financial officer of Boston Private, said in an interview that his company's strategy is to replicate its success in the Boston market in other geographic areas.

"All businesses are pushed by demographics," said Mr. Pressey, and Boston Private has seen a lot of business formation in New York. "New York is one of the top four markets out there," he said.

Boston Private focuses on private banking, wealth advisory, and investment management services. It had $2.8 billion of assets under management at June 30.

About 90% of the deal's initial purchase price is to be paid in cash and the remainder in Boston Private common stock. The deal is expected to close this quarter. Boston Private also has agreed to buy the remaining 19% of KLS within five years.

Boston Private markets and distributes its services in New England, Northern and Southern California, New York, and the Northwest, said Mr. Pressey. Seven other areas are attractive to both Boston Private and the whole high-net-worth industry, he said -- South Florida, Atlanta, the District of Columbia and Northern Virginia, Philadelphia, Chicago, Denver, and Austin, Tex.

If it chose to expand in any of the latter areas, it would try to do so through similar deals, he said. …

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