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Stifel CEO Ron Kruszewski
Stifel CEO Ron Kruszewski

Stifel Sheds Sterne Agee’s Wealth Management Business

Just a year after closing on its acquisition of Sterne Agee, Stifel Financial announced plans Monday to sell the firm’s independent brokerage, clearing and RIA businesses to INTL FCStone Inc., a commodities and Forex broker.

The sale, expected to close in July, will include Sterne Agee Financial Services, Sterne Agee Clearing, Sterne Agee Leach, Sterne Agee Asset Management and Sterne Agee Investment Advisory Services. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. But the purchase price is about equal to the tangible net asset value of the combined businesses, INTL FCStone said in a statement. INTL says the acquisition will not result in a material loss for the firm in the first year, and will be accretive in the second year.

"This acquisition brings $11 billion in client assets, over 100,000 accounts and 50 correspondent clearing relationships to INTL,” said Charles Lyon, head of INTL FCStone's securities division, in a statement. “The Sterne Agee clearing business is a well-respected franchise that provides us with a strong platform to grow our clearing and related securities activities. The independent wealth management business provides us with an excellent foothold in a segment of retail wealth management that is growing and should lead to additional opportunities in that space."

In February 2015, Stifel agreed to buy Alabama-based Sterne Agee for about $150 million. That deal, which increased the firm’s advisor force by 35 percent, closed last June.

“Last year we successfully integrated the Private Client Group branches and institutional fixed income business from our Sterne Agee acquisition,” said Ronald J. Kruszewski, chairman and CEO of Stifel, in a statement. “We are pleased to have found an acquirer in INTL FCStone who is committed to these businesses and the professionals in the Birmingham community.”

INTL FCStone will retain 160 of Sterne Agee’s support staff, based in Birmingham, Ala., Charlotte, N.C. and Youngstown, Ohio.

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