Goodbody staff double stake in firm to 49% in five years

Value of stockbroking firm more than quadrupled following Fexco takeover in 2011

Management and staff at Goodbody Stockbrokers have doubled their stake in the firm to 49 per cent since 2011, when it was taken over by financial services firm Fexco.

They were helped in this by a surge in share trading and fees from corporate deals last year.

Goodbody, led by managing director Roy Barrett, initially stood little chance of reaching incentive targets as it remained loss-making in the early years following its takeover by Co Kerry-based Fexco.

However, a subsequent recovery in the Irish stock market and corporate transactions over the past few years, especially in 2015, saw staff achieve the maximum stake target set under the deal, according to sources close to the matter.

€24m purchase

Fexco’s stake in Goodbody has fallen to 51 per cent from 75 per cent at the time of its €24 million purchase from AIB in January 2011. In that time the value of the stockbroking firm has more than quadrupled, sources say.

A spokesman for Goodbody and and spokeswoman for Fexco declined to comment.

Last year saw the value of trading in shares and the Iseq20 Exchange Traded Fund on the Irish Stock Exchange soar by almost 33 per cent to €84.2 billion.

Goodbody’s corporate finance unit was also involved in a number of deals in 2015.

These included advising the Willie Walsh-led International Consolidated Airlines Group on its €1.36 billion purchase of Aer Lingus, and AIB on its capital reorganisation and return of an initial instalment on its bailout to taxpayers.

Other transactions in which Goodbody was involved include the London flotation of house-builder Cairn Homes; a €500 million share sale in Permanent TSB; and CRH's purchase of assets from Franco-Swiss building materials group LafargeHolcim.

Corporate deal-flow has dwindled this year, amid concerns over the prospects of the global economy.

Staff numbers at Goodbody, which traces its roots back to 1877, have increased to 320 from a low point of about 210 following redundancies around the time of the Fexco takeover.