A&O lands role to advise on Collins Stewart Tullett operations demerger

Allen & Overy has landed the key role of advising Collins Stewart Tullett on its proposed demerger.

Corporate partner Mark Dighero is acting for longstanding client Collins Stewart Tullett in a move that will see the banking operation separate from the stockbroking business.

Dighero told The Lawyer: “Collins Stewart [Tullett] operates in a heavily regulated environment and there will be change of control issues, but we’ve already been given a waiver from the Financial Services Authority.”

Dighero is the main adviser for all of Collins Stewart Tullett’s corporate work. He first advised Tullett in March 2003 when it was taken over by Collins Stewart. Clifford Chance and Gouldens (now Jones Day) were instructed by Collins Stewart.

Dighero was later brought in to act for Collins Stewart Tullett on its £125m takeover of the Prebon Group in October 2004. In November 2005 the company called off talks with potential private equity bidders.

Dighero will be working closely with Collins Stewart Tullett head of legal Simon Clark.

The demerger will form two new companies – banking arm Collins Stewart and stock brokerage Tullett Prebon. It is understood that the separation will take place in the third quarter of 2006.

Current shareholders will receive one share in each of the new businesses for each share they hold now. At least £300m of capital will also be returned to shareholders.

Both companies will be quoted on the London Stock Exchange. Collins Stewart Tullett has a current market capitalisation estimated at £1.5bn.