Old Mutual Wealth-owned network Intrinsic has made a “non-binding” offer for Tenet as part of a possible break-up of the business, Mortgage Strategy’s sister title, Money Marketing, understands.
It is believed Aviva – which already owns a 47 per cent stake in Tenet – has also tabled a bid specifically focused on TenetLime, the network’s mortgage and protection business.
The insurer became the biggest shareholder in Tenet after acquiring Friends Life and insiders say it is keen to offload the network.
However, Aviva is considering retaining Tenet’s mortgage and protection arm to add to PMS, the mortgage division of Sesame Bankhall, which Aviva also owns.
Old Mutual Wealth’s interest in the pensions and investments business points to a possible break-up. It is also understood Standard Life, which owns 25 per cent of Tenet, could be standing in the way of a deal as it has reservations about selling to a rival fund group that could scoop up the network’s assets.
An industry insider says: “Aviva does not have any interest in being part of a network, they seem to have accepted that they can’t get rid of Sesame Bankhall and they don’t want to build up any new liabilities. But as TenetLime is a mortgage network the liability for the advice itself would stick with the rest of Tenet.
“They might be thinking that if Old Mutual is not interested in Tenet-Lime, they could just merge it in with PMS. Aviva might be doing this just to accelerate the sale.”
Old Mutual Wealth, Aviva and Tenet declined to comment.
A third stake in Tenet – 22 per cent – is owned by Aegon, with the remainder held by independent shareholders.
Figures published in January show Tenet recorded a pre-tax profit of £471,952 for the year to 30 September 2015, up 32 per cent on 2014.
Turnover increased by almost nine per cent, from £125m to £136m.
TenetLime’s turnover climbed 48 per cent.