Penson Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ:PNSN) announced that, due to the significant interest shown in Penson’s Canadian business, its Board of Directors has recently engaged Financial Technology Partners LP and FTP Securities LLC (together, “FT Partners”) as exclusive financial and strategic advisors for the potential sale of its Canadian subsidiary, Penson Financial Services Canada Inc. (PFSC).
PFSC, the largest independent clearing firm in Canada, is also Penson’s largest international subsidiary. As of September 30, 2011, PFSC had more than 100 client firms, including 28 correspondent broker dealers; book value of $54 million (CA$56 million), 12-month trailing net revenues of $46 million (CA$46 million), and 179 employees.
The Board has acted in response to recent serious interest in PFSC from several financial institutions as well as a result of the recent successful sale of Penson’s Australian subsidiary. Any sale of PFSC, which cannot be assured until an agreement is reached, would be subject to regulatory and other customary approvals. The sale of PFSC now becomes part of the Company’s overall strategic initiatives involving the sale of non-core assets, reducing debt and costs, and improving profitability.
“As a consequence of the Board’s decision, Penson has decided to focus the Company on its core US securities and futures businesses,” said Philip A. Pendergraft, Chief Executive Officer of parent Penson Worldwide. “These businesses have significant excess regulatory capital, with virtually all customer segregated funds held in U.S. bank accounts with FDIC insurance coverage. We believe significant opportunities exist in the U.S. for a clearing and execution firm like Penson, where our agency business model allows us to have our core focus on our correspondent clients.”About Penson Financial Services Canada: www.penson.ca As Canada's leading independent carrying broker, Penson offers custom, service-focused solutions that are both innovative and economically attractive. Such an adaptable product offering makes Penson a clear choice for a wide variety of financial institutions in the Canadian marketplace. With offices in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary, PFSC is a participating organization with the Toronto Stock Exchange, the Montreal Exchange, the CNSX Exchange and the TSX Venture Exchange, is regulated by the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada, is a member of the CIPF, CDCC and CDS and subscribes to various Canadian Alternative Trading Systems.