Countplus boss Phil Aris is contemplating rebranding the company as part of a plan to list two new entities on the ASX.
Speaking to InvestorDaily, Mr Aris said the firm will use funds generated from equity buybacks to list recently formed entities Blue789 and Advice389 on the ASX.
Blue789 is looking to buy up accounting firms with annual turnovers around $10 million, while Advice389 will do the same for financial planning firms in the $3 million region, Mr Aris said.
The creation of the two new entities is part of a broader strategy at Countplus to encourage the existing 20 member firms to buy back at least 40 per cent of their equity.
“We would expect in the first quarter of 2015/2016 that three of our larger firms will buy back 40 per cent of their equity.
“Part of the money that we get back from that we will be investing in Blue789 and Advice389,” Mr Aris said.
The plan is to list those two entities, providing member firms with some readily tradeable shares in their businesses, he said.
“[Member firms] like the idea of getting an uplift in a market listing and it also gives them liquidity for their shares.
“Eventually Countplus will be a business that owns accounting practices, but not 100 per cent,” he said.
Both Blue789 and Advice389 are branded with a green ‘swoosh’ beneath them, and the plan is to do the same thing for the Countplus brand.
“It’s green because it’s about grass roots. We’re about investing in businesses that are leaders in their community, but they’re grass-roots businesses,” he said.
While any changes are subject to shareholder approval at the AGM in November, the intention of the Countplus board is to change the name of the company to CUP Group (reflecting the firm’s ASX ticker).
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