AFH puts acquisitions on hold

AFH Financial Group has put its acquisition pipeline on hold in response to the global coronavirus pandemic. The firm has made a commitment to temporarily cut costs in order to “address the likely impact of lockdown on top line revenue”. So far, AFH has cut costs by £3m.

AFH said in a statement: “Following a period of consolidation, the group is continuing to focus on cash generation and organic growth.

“Whilst the group remains open to future select acquisitions, should suitable opportunities present themselves, with a focus on smaller IFAs and larger businesses where the majority of advisers are employed or equity participants in the target company, following the current Covid-19 outbreak, evaluation of acquisition opportunities has been temporarily suspended.” 

CEO Alan Hudson said: “Throughout the ongoing crisis, our efforts have been focused on protecting the health, safety and wellbeing of our employees and their families, while continuing to deliver the same high level of service to clients and maintaining long-term value creation for shareholders.”

“The company adapted quickly to the challenges presented in March and, by the end of the month, had over 400 staff and all advisers working from home with full access to AFH’s web-based infrastructure, which has been the focus of significant investment since 2015.

“Under the ongoing restrictions and uncertainty in the financial markets, the board expects that while gross revenue for the current year will be lower than market expectations this will be largely offset by the variable nature of the group’s cost of sales and cost reductions implemented by the company.”