Roger Foster, founder and part-time chairman of Financial Objects, and Stewart Foster, who was a board member and director of the Activebank division, have launched a new private equity firm called Third Financial. They are seeking acquisition-ready companies in the financial technology sector after last month leaving Financial Objects.
The father and son team say London-based Third Financial is set to acquire companies and provide financial and management investments – enabling them to consolidate, grow and take advantage of the global financial market.
Stewart Foster is leading the investment firm’s search for specialist organisations that are suitable for acquisition. The company will make investments between one and ten million pounds and for any larger deals will partner with other private equity firms. While the company’s founders have experience in running listed companies and in IPOs on both the AIM and fully listed markets, they say Third Financial will focus predominantly on the private sector, but will also consider public company acquisitions.
"The financial technology landscape is both diverse and fragmented, which means there is enormous potential for acquisition and integration. As a result, our company’s launch is extremely timely," said Stewart Foster, co-founder and CEO of Third Financial. "We aim to be instrumental in turning specialist companies around not simply through financial investment, but also with the injection of market knowledge and practical management capabilities. This, in turn, will generate vast improvements on a commercial and operational level, enabling challenged companies to develop and flourish."
Prior to founding Third Financial, Stewart Foster was a board director of AIM listed Financial Objects Plc, where he was responsible for two of the company’s largest and most successful divisions – Activebank Retail and Activebank Wealth Management – as well as the establishment of its major offshore development centre in Bangalore.
Roger Foster founded ACT and built it into one of the world’s largest packaged financial software companies before heading its sale to Misys in 1995. He then founded Financial Objects, but stepped down as chairman and CEO in 2000, making way for David Carruthers who was one of the founders and designers of the Ibis banking system, which Financial Objects acquired in 1996.
But in 2003 he reassumed control after a slump in the company's sales of its Activebank product. Since 2003 Financial Objects has acquired Wealth Management Software and Raft, which extended its business into the wealth management and energy sectors, and has turned around the performance of its Activebank division.