Kuwaiti European Holding Group (KEH) said on Tuesday that it had spent 8.45 million pounds ($11.03 million) to buy a 23.1 percent stake in British financial services firm WH Ireland Group Plc, to help serve financial services clients across the Middle East and Britain.
KEH, an investment company focused on property, health and leisure businesses, said WH Ireland's business model and strategy was "highly complementary" to that of KEH's financial services businesses - Armila Capital and Al-Fouz Investment Company.
"This partnership will allow the companies to provide cross-market corporate and capital markets advisory and capital raising services to their respective clients," KEH said in a statement.
As part of the deal, KEH Chief Executive Humphrey Percy will become a representative on WH Ireland's board, the Gulf company said.
"An important component of KEH's strategy is to build out a financial services division that can develop a true bridge between investors in Kuwait and elsewhere in the Middle East, and financial markets in Europe, particularly in London," Percy said.
WH Ireland, which offers private wealth management, wealth planning and corporate broking services, said it would work with KEH Group to accelerate its growth opportunities.
"KEH Group has an exciting plan for growth within its existing financial services companies in the Gulf states and the UK," WH Ireland Chief Executive Richard Killingbeck said.
WH Ireland expects to be able to help support this growth, Killingbeck said.
WH Ireland's regulatory filing did not disclose from whom KEH bought the stake.
The news follows a Sky News report on Saturday that KEH Group was close to announcing a deal to buy a stake in WH Ireland, and may also consider acquiring the London-listed company entirely. bit.ly/2cWGKPN
WH Ireland held 2.7 billion pounds ($3.52 billion) in assets under management as of May 31.
The British stockbroker would not be the first to attract investment from the Middle East.
The biggest shareholder in WH Ireland's rival Panmure Gordon & Co is Qatari investment bank QInvest, with a 43.43 percent stake, according to Thomson Reuters data.
($1 = 0.7659 pounds)
(Reporting by Esha Vaish and Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier and Sunil Nair)