Brewin confident about future after 13pc pre-tax profits blow


Stockbroker and private investment manager Brewin Dolphin is confident about its financial future, despite reporting a 13 per cent drop in pre-tax profits on the previous year.

The company, which has a large presence in Birmingham, yesterday announced that profits were reduced to £36.2million, compared with £41.7million last year.

But Jamie Matheson, executive chairman, said that he was satisfied that the company was positioned at the top end of the market range.

As the UK’s largest independent private client investment manager, Brewin Dolphin considers itself well-placed to weather the financial storms with a constantly re-evaluated portfolio of investments. The past year has seen the company channel an increased amount of money into government-backed bonds and alter its asset allocation, reducing the proportion of funds in equities from 85 per cent a year ago down to 75 per cent now.

Total income for the year ended 28 September was £206million, down marginally from £209million in 2007.

Brewin Dolphin suffered a 21 per cent fall in the FTSE 100 over the same period, but operating profits from the investment management division rose seven per cent to £29.6million.

“Our stance as far as the current year is concerned is that we are preparing for 2009 to be a pretty tough year, but without being complacent I think Brewins is in a pretty good spot,” Mr Matheson said.

“It’s well structured in terms of our national coverage and franchise, and I think we have economies of scale.” Mr Matheson added that the company would not be “taking the foot off the gas” and planned to continue expanding.