Intertrust Group acquires Walkers Management Services

Offshore law firm Walkers has announced the sale of its management services business to Intertrust Group Holding SA. The sale follows a comprehensive strategic review of the Walkers Group, the law firm said in a statement.

Walkers Management Services provides corporate, fiduciary and company secretarial services and is headquartered in George Town, Grand Cayman. The management services arm, which currently generates sales of more than $50 million, employs more than 100 people in the Cayman Islands, Delaware, Dubai, Dublin, Hong Kong and the British Virgin Islands.

As a combined group, trust and corporate management services provider Intertrust will operate with more than 1,100 people across 30 offices in 21 countries.

The firm, which provides commercial, legal, tax and administrative services to multinational corporations and high net worth individuals, will gain a market leading position in the Cayman Islands with the acquisition and expand the group’s global network by adding offices in Dubai, Delaware and the British Virgin Islands, said David de Buck, chief executive officer of Intertrust.

“Walkers Management Services has a strong, international position in the corporate services industry; providing high quality services to top-tier clients that will benefit from Intertrust’s capabilities to service them across the globe,” he added.

Mr. de Buck expressed confidence that Walkers Management Services’ quality, experience, heritage and approach to servicing clients would mirror Intertrust’s culture.

It is the second deal in as many years for Intertrust in the Cayman Islands.

In 2011, the group acquired Close Brothers’ trust, fiduciary services, fund administration and banking business in Cayman in a transaction initially valued at US$34 million.

Commenting on the sale, Nancy Lewis, chief executive officer of Walkers Management Services, said the combined network of offices will deliver a strong foundation for further growth of the business, and bring a sound position in all key international business locations in Asia, Europe and the Americas.

“This platform will allow us to provide even greater global solutions for our clients,” she said.

Diarmad Murray, Walkers’ global managing partner, said: “We are excited about the future of the law firm and the opportunities this sale creates.

We are focused on continuing to provide world class legal services to our clients around the world and we will work closely with Intertrust to ensure that all work will be carried out in the same manner and by the same group of professionals.”

The acquisition is still subject to regulatory approval and expected to be completed in the coming months. J.P. Morgan Securities LLC is acting as financial adviser to WMS.

Meanwhile, Reuters reported in February that the owner of Intertrust, private equity firm Waterland, is seeking to sell the group after acquiring the business three years ago from Fortis Bank Nederland.

Waterland is expected to make a profit on the sale as Intertrust’s earnings have grown to around $65 million, Reuters reported, quoting an unidentified banking source.