Mariner Sells Tortoise Unit

Tortoise Investments, one of the region’s largest wealth-management institutions and a subsidiary of Mariner Holdings, is being acquired by a Los Angeles-based private equity firm, Lovell Minnick Partners, and members of the Tortoise management team, the firm announced this morning. 

The deal is particularly significant for Mariner, as Tortoise accounted for roughly $20 billion of the firm’s $46million in assets under management or advisement. Current managers and employees will retain a significant share of the firm going forward, including increased ownership through additional capital investments in tandem with Lovell Minnick.

 “We believe this partnership will deepen our financial flexibility to facilitate strategic growth, which also provides opportunities to develop and retain employees,” said Kevin Birzer, chief executive officer and co-founder of Tortoise. “Most important, Tortoise will remain focused on our goal of delivering strong returns to our clients while providing top quality service.”

Tortoise, one of the country’s largest firms in energy investments, will maintain its independence and autonomy with its brand, the release said, along with investment processes and day-to-day portfolio management remaining unchanged. Members senior management and its portfolio managers have signed long-term employment agreements to remain with the firm, but three co-founders–Zachary Hamel, Kenneth Malvey and Terry Matlack–will sell their remaining interest in Tortoise and retire from Tortoise.

In addition to Lovell Minnick, new investors include HarbourVest Partners, AlpInvest Partners, and several additional limited partners. Subject to approval from regulators, clients and shareholders, the sale is expected in early 2018.