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Xafinity to acquire Punter Southall businesses

Xafinity is looking to acquire Punter Southall Group's actuarial consulting, pensions administration and investment consulting businesses, for 153 million ($204 million).

The deal is valued at 92.52 million in cash in addition to issue of new ordinary shares worth 42 million, Xafinity said in a news release Thursday.

Separately, Xafinity's independent trustee business, HR Trustees, will merge with Punter Southall's independent trustee services business, PS Independent Trustees, at an agreed value of 8.48 million and issue of shares worth 10 million.

A Punter Southall spokesman said the deal is expected to be completed by Jan. 11 should shareholders approve the acquisition at a Jan. 4 general meeting.

"The deal will create the largest 'pure-play' pensions consultancy firm in the U.K. market. This transaction marks another significant step in our strategy toward becoming the preeminent midtier pensions consultancy firm in the U.K., with the combination of these businesses providing an expanded, yet focused, offering for clients that will position us as the primary alternative to the big three global consultancies," said Paul Cuff and Ben Bramhall, co-CEOs of Xafinity, in the release.

Punter Southall said in a separate statement Thursday that it intends to become the largest single shareholder in Xafinity in 2018 subject to regulatory and shareholder approval. Workplace savings, health and protection, and wealth management businesses will remain under Punter Southall Group.

Xafinity provides actuarial advice, consulting and administration to 550 U.K. occupational pension funds. Punter Southall Group has more than 8 billion in assets under advisory.