JPMorgan buys robo-advisor Nutmeg to boosts UK expansion

JPMorgan Chase has agreed to buy UK online investment management platform Nutmeg as it enters the Britain’s retail banking market.

The US banking giant announced its plans on Thursday to buy the robo-adviser for an undisclosed sum. Nutmeg has grown quickly since its launch in 2012 and now manages £3.5 billion in assets for about 140,000 customers. It offers a range of investment accounts, such as ISAs, pensions and general investment accounts.

The deal comes ahead of JPMorgan’s plans to launch a digital bank brand in the UK later this year.


Sanoke Viswanathan, head of JPMorgan’s international consumer business, said in the statement:

We are building Chase in the U.K. from scratch using the very latest technology and putting the customer’s experience at the heart of our offering, principles that Nutmeg shares with us.

The Financial Times reported that JPMorgan approached Nutmeg while the wealth management platform was looking for a new fundraising round as it invested in revenue growth, without turning a profit. The deal offered Nutmeg higher valuation than it was likely to receive in the funding market, a person close to the deal said. It offered the company a chance to take their services to global markets and JPMorgan’s investment would help keep rivals at bay.

Nutmeg CEO Neil Alexander commented saying that customers can “expect the same level of transparency, convenience and service that helped make us a leading digital wealth manager in the U.K.”

Earlier this month, JPMorgan Chase & Co tapped Bob Elfring, former executive of Bank of America Corp after three years out of the M&A Market. Elfring is set to take on the position of vice-chairman of investment banking for the Middle East, Africa and Europe, as the bank fights for crucial advisory mandates to lead the M&A market as it resurges.

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