Morgan Staney's $900 mn Solium deal eyes younger clients

Morgan Stanley to buy Canadian employee stock manager Solium for $1.1 billion — a 43% premium

Morgan Stanley to buy Calgary-based Solium Capital for $1.1 billion

Morgan Stanley announced its largest acquisition since the financial crisis yesterday with the $900 million purchase of a Canadian employee share scheme manager.

Morgan Stanley wants Solium to complement its workplace wealth management business, helping it to capture millennials on the plans that have a good chance of getting rich and therefore needing to move to advisor-based relationships. The deal is expected to close by June 30.

Morgan Stanley will add Calgary-based Solium's 3,000 stock-plan clients and 1 million participants to its rival offering, which has 320 clients and 1.5 million participants. This combination will create a leading provider of stock plan administration services and Workplace Wealth.

Morgan Stanley is boosting its stock plan administration plan business with the acquisition of software-as-a-service provider Solium Capital Inc.

Marcos Lopez, CEO of Solium, will remain with the company and be based in Calgary.

"As we've said, we'd look to pursue more", Andy Saperstein, co-head of wealth management at Morgan Stanley, said in an interview.

The proposal, which would see Morgan Stanley acquire Solium for approximately $1.1-billion, or $19.15 a share, has the unanimous approval of the company's board. Morgan Stanley entered into a partnership with Solium in 2016 to administer equity compensation plans for Morgan Stanley's corporate clients and their employees.

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