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Manulife buys Wellington West Financial from National Bank

Manulife Financial headquarters in Toronto.

Galit Rodan/The Globe and Mail

Manulife Financial will acquire independent financial planning firm Wellington West Financial Services Inc. from National Bank Financial Group, adding about $900-million in assets to Manulife Securities.

No financial terms for the transaction were released on Wednesday.

"This transaction allows us to build on our position as one of Canada's premier investment firms and reflects our commitment to independent financial advice in Canada," said Rick Annaert, chief executive of Manulife Securities.

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"There is a natural cultural fit between our two firms. We're looking forward to serving the needs of Wellington West Financial Services' clients and financial advisers."

The deal also will add 39 financial advisers to Manulife Securities.

Wellington West Financial Services provides personal and corporate financial planning services through its network of independent financial advisers in British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba and Ontario.

The acquisition will create a team at Manulife Securities of more than 1,250 independent advisers with $20-billion in assets under administration. Manulife Securities' advisers provide independent financial planning and investment management services to individuals, families and business owners.

The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter 2012 and is subject to regulatory approval.

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