Samuel Montagu & Co.

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Samuel Montagu & Co. was a British merchant bank founded by Samuel Montagu in 1853.

A merchant bank is historically a bank dealing in commercial loans and investment. In modern British usage it is the same as an investment bank. Merchant banks were the first modern banks and evolved from medieval merchants who traded in commodities, particularly cloth merchants. Historically, merchant banks' purpose was to facilitate and/or finance production and trade of commodities, hence the name "merchant". Few banks today restrict their activities to such a narrow scope.

Set up as a bullion brokerage firm, it aimed to make money from the Australian gold rush by brokering deals between sellers and buyers. From 1911 onwards, it became part of the group of companies which formed the London bullion market. [1]

Bullion is gold, silver, or other precious metals in the form of bars, ingots, or specialized coins. Typically, bullion is used for trade on a market. The word "bullion" comes from the old French word bouillon, which meant "boiling", and was the term for the activity of a melting house.

A broker is a person or firm who arranges transactions between a buyer and a seller for a commission when the deal is executed. A broker who also acts as a seller or as a buyer becomes a principal party to the deal. Neither role should be confused with that of an agent—one who acts on behalf of a principal party in a deal.

The London bullion market is a wholesale over-the-counter market for the trading of gold and silver. Trading is conducted amongst members of the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA), loosely overseen by the Bank of England. Most of the members are major international banks or bullion dealers and refiners.

After the death of founder Samuel Montagu, the bank passed into the ownership of the family trust, Montagu Trust. In 1967, the Midland Bank acquired a share in Montagu Trust, and so became the first British clearing bank to control a London merchant bank. Samuel Montagu & Co. became a wholly owned subsidiary in 1974, [2] and on completion of the acquisition Midland also gained a majority share in Guyerzeller Bank AG in Switzerland. Michael Samuel Rosenberg was Director of Corporate Finance for Samuel Montagu & Co. Ltd., from 1972 to 1974 [3] [2]

Midland Bank Plc was one of the Big Four banking groups in the United Kingdom for most of the 20th century. It is now part of HSBC. The bank was founded as the Birmingham and Midland Bank in Union Street, Birmingham, England in August 1836. It expanded in the Midlands, absorbing many local banks, and merged with the Central Bank of London Ltd. in 1891, becoming the London City and Midland Bank.

HSBC Guyerzeller Bank AG, a member of the HSBC Group, was a Swiss private bank advising individuals and families in all matters of wealth management, investment advice and trust services. Its head office was in Zurich, and it had two branches in Geneva, as well as representative offices in Hong Kong and Istanbul. It had 360 employees and about CHF 29 billion in assets under management. It is now subsumed under HSBC Private Bank.

Switzerland federal republic in Central Europe

Switzerland, officially the Swiss Confederation, is a sovereign state situated in the confluence of western, central, and southern Europe. It is a federal republic composed of 26 cantons, with federal authorities seated in Bern. Switzerland is a landlocked country bordered by Italy to the south, France to the west, Germany to the north, and Austria and Liechtenstein to the east. It is geographically divided between the Alps, the Swiss Plateau and the Jura, spanning a total area of 41,285 km2 (15,940 sq mi), and land area of 39,997 km2 (15,443 sq mi). While the Alps occupy the greater part of the territory, the Swiss population of approximately 8.5 million is concentrated mostly on the plateau, where the largest cities are located, among them the two global cities and economic centres of Zürich and Geneva.

Samuel Montagu's chairman in 1977 was Philip Shelbourne, who owned a terrier named Montagu, which would travel with him in the back seat of his chauffeur-driven Mercedes. Shelbourne, a trained barrister, had been the first outside director of NM Rothschild, before joining the Drayton Corporation, a manager of investment trusts. Its founder, Harley Drayton, was a well-known City buccaneer. Drayton was later absorbed by Samuel Montagu, to form the merchant bank's investment management subsidiary, Drayton Montagu Portfolio Management. In 1977 its managing director was David, now Lord, Stevens.

Today, Samuel Montagu & Co. forms part of the private banking service of HSBC. The name was last used by HSBC in 2000. In 2003, HSBC spun off its private equity business, which took the name Montagu Private Equity. [4]

Montagu Private Equity is a European private equity firm with headquarters in London. Founded in 1968, in 2017 it was reported to have over €4 billion of fund assets under management. It has invested in over 400 businesses over the last four decades. Montagu also has offices in London, Düsseldorf, Manchester, Paris and Warsaw.

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  1. "Samuel Montagu & Co". Retrieved 2012-01-02.
  2. 1 2 HSBC Group in Europe Archived 2011-09-27 at the Wayback Machine
  4. Keers, By Helena (2003-03-19). "HSBC buyout team revives Montagu name" . Retrieved 2014-10-08.