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Challenger brand set for next phase of success

2 July 2024: Isio, one of the fastest growing pensions, reward and benefit and investment advisory businesses in the UK, has secured new investment from Aquiline Capital Partners LP (“Aquiline”), a private investment specialist in financial services and related technologies, to support the next phase of its growth. The investment, subject to regulatory requirements, will see Exponent, which has supported Isio from before its inception in March 2020 exit its investment in the business.

Isio launched to challenge the status quo in pensions, benefits and investment advisory.  It has experienced significant growth over the past four years, more than doubling revenue, profit and headcount, and now employs 1,200 people across 10 UK offices.

The new investment from Aquiline, which has deep experience in the global retirement and wealth management services sectors, will support Isio to continue its ambitious growth trajectory with a focus on delivering value for clients through innovation.

Andrew Coles, Chief Executive of Isio, commented: “We have had an exceptional four years working in close partnership with Exponent from the carve out and set up phase and to then support us and to grow our business, creating opportunities for our people and clients. We are grateful for their belief and support which has enabled our success today.  Our clients and our people have responded well to Isio bringing a bold and innovative approach to the market with a willingness to do things differently.

“This new investment from Aquiline will enable us to continue the journey of bringing high quality service and better outcomes to our clients. Key to this is having a culture that appeals to the best talent in the sector with long-term, high quality career opportunities. I am personally excited about the future and look forward to continuing to lead Isio in its next phase of evolution and growth.”

Igno van Waesberghe, Managing Partner at Aquiline, commented: “We are delighted to be investing in Isio.  It operates in sectors where we have extensive experience and deep networks. 

“Isio is a business we have admired and got to know well, not simply as an investment, but first as our advisor and then our partner.  We have been particularly impressed by the depth of their expertise in creating better outcomes for clients.  It has delivered impressive organic growth and successful expansion through strategic M&A. We look forward to working with Isio’s management team to continue to develop their offering, diversify the business, and support them in further accelerating growth.”

Tim Easingwood, Partner at Exponent, commented:“Isio’s journey, from the original carve out and stand up of the independent business in 2020, to the powerful advisory business of scale today, has been hugely gratifying to be part of. During our investment, Andrew and the management team have created a market-leading proposition centred on exceptional client service and an entrepreneurial approach, resulting in strong growth and an exciting outlook. We are confident that Isio will continue to thrive with Aquiline’s investment and keep delivering on its ambitious goals. We wish the whole Isio team every success in the next stage of the business’ exciting journey.”

Exponent and Isio were advised by Evercore (financial adviser) and Macfarlanes (legal adviser).  Isio’s management were also advised by Liberty Corporate Finance and Proskauer. Aquiline were advised by RBC Capital Markets and Herbert Smith Freehills.