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SS&C Buys Asset Services Firm Conifer for $88.5M

Solution provider SS&C Technologies said it can now provide a wider array of services to outsourced CIO portfolios thanks to its $88.5 million purchase of Conifer Financial Services.

SS&C Technologies said it can now provide a wider array of services to outsourced CIO portfolios thanks to its $88.5 million purchase of Conifer Financial Services.

The Windsor, Conn.-based company, No. 36 on the CRN Solution Provider 500, strengthened its market position on the West Coast through its acquisition of San Francisco-based Conifer. The 27-year-old firm said that becoming part of SS&C will allow it to accelerate its growth plans and pace of innovation.

"SS&C's innovations in cloud and mobile technology are transforming asset servicing," Jack McDonald, Conifer's CEO, said in a statement. "We look forward to introducing this winning strategy to our customers and new markets."

[RELATED: SS&C Bolsters CRM Capabilities With Acquisition of Salentica]

Conifer's senior management will continue to lead the business, according to the company. Conifer has 200 clients worldwide representing $110 billion of combined assets under administration, and offices in New York, Singapore and Nova Scotia.

The company services pensions, endowments, foundations, family offices, RIAs, traditional asset managers, private equity and hedge funds. Conifer said it had staked its reputation on strong customer relationships and client services, and the fruits of that labor paid off by way of a "global outperformer" rating on the 2016 Global Custodian Hedge Fund Administration Survey

"Conifer shares SS&C's vision on delivering high quality services to solve real customer problems," Bill Stone, SS&C's chairman and CEO, said in a statement. "We look forward to leveraging our technology and services to immediately deliver greater value to existing and new clients."

SS&C and Conifer executives were not immediately available for additional comment. Confiner employs between 201 and 500 people, according to the company's LinkedIn page.

The company is the byproduct of a 2014 merger between Conifer and New York-based Vastardis Capital, which was founded in 2003. The Carlyle Group, a Washington D.C.-based private equity giant, bought Conifer from senior management and silent partners in March 2015.

In July 2015, Conifer Securities – the company's prime services division – was sold to New York-based financial services firm Cowen Group. Conifer announced plans to expand its footprint in Nova Scotia in October 2015, proposing to spend an additional $60.8 million over the next seven years to create 350 new jobs.

SS&C has been very active in the M&A space this year. In 2016, the company bought Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform developer Salentica in October; middle- and back-office management firm Wells Fargo Global Fund Services in September; and it acquired a minority stake in learning technology provider Nervanix in April.

SS&C's acquisition push has had an impact on the company's top line, with sales in the most recent quarter climbing to $383.3 million, up 36.5 percent from $280.9 million last year. Net income also improved to $38.7 million, or 19 cents per share, a dramatic turnaround from a net loss of $34.6 million last year.

SS&C was founded in 1986 and employed 6,089 people at the end of 2015. The company said more than 10,000 financial services organizations manage and account for their investments using SS&C's products and services.

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