Perpetual Investments strengthened ties with corporate adviser Goldman Sachs JBWere with the appointment of a defence adviser last year, although analysts say a takeover attempt on it is now less likely.

The appointment of GSJBW managing director of investment banking, John Anderson, was made last year before the July credit crunch, since which funds management companies have fallen out of favour with investors. However, Perpetual may have become more attractive to predators at its current price, which as of yesterday was almost $22 below its 12-month peak of $84.58. A spokesperson for Perpetual confirmed it had an ongoing relationship with GSJBW, but declined to comment on the appointment of Anderson. It is understood Anderson was appointed following a tender for the position among the major investment banks. Anderson is a well-known defence adviser in the market, and recently advised Promina on the successful takeover bid from Suncorp. One analyst of Perpetual said the appointment of a defence adviser was not uncommon for a major company, and was unconvinced there would be any bids for a takeover of Perpetual. Another analyst was also skeptical of Perpetual as a takeover target in the near future, given the challenges that the most likely bidders – the major banks – have had with their own funds management businesses. The analyst said Perpetual’s private client business might be attractive, but the “;mature”; Australian equities management business was less so.

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