Allia today announces that it has reached an agreement to acquire a controlling interest in City & Continental, an established London-based institutional fixed income broker that services institutions across both primary and secondary markets. City & Continental will maintain its name and services while also providing new debt finance solutions for charities and impact businesses under the Allia Impact Finance brand.
Allia announces acquisition of City & Continental
Allia is a charity dedicated to helping impact organisations through the provision of workspace, business support and innovative finance. Through its Impact Finance division, Allia has extensive experience in bond issuance across sectors including housing, care and education. In 2014 it launched its Retail Charity Bonds platform, which has to date raised around £200 million for charities from retail and institutional investors through 8 bonds that are traded on London Stock Exchange.
As part of the transaction, City & Continental will be collaborating with JCRA, the financial risk management consultancy on the origination of bond issues. Part of the arrangement will see JCRA Directors Adrian Bell and Henrietta Podd split their time across City & Continental and JCRA, with Adrian becoming CEO of City & Continental.
Through this acquisition, Allia Impact Finance will be able to provide a wider range of debt advisory and arranging services to charities and impact businesses. City & Continental will continue its current broker services and will also offer debt solutions for corporate issuers, with a particular focus on retail-eligible bonds, non-index eligible public issues, private placements and bond restructuring.
Commenting on the acquisition, Tim Jones, CEO of Allia, said: “This transaction, which combines Allia and JCRA’s knowledge of the retail charity bond market with the specialist expertise of City & Continental, marks a major step for Allia. In the context of growing demand for investments making a positive impact, it will allow Allia Impact Finance to better advise organisations on their financing options and help them get the deal that is best for them.”
Also commenting on the acquisition, Adrian Bell said: “I am delighted to be joining City & Continental as CEO. Impact investing is a rapidly growing area of the market, and by coming together with Allia Impact Finance we will be able to offer an expanded range of advisory, arranging and distribution services under one roof.”
Oliver Butt, director of City & Continental, said: “This is an exciting new stage for City & Continental. We’re pleased to be joining Allia and becoming part of its mission to grow the impact investing market.”
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Allia is a not-for-profit organisation that supports businesses - through flexible workspace, social finance and free business support - so that they can grow and create positive impact, on their communities and on the planet.