AIM Adviser Index

GrowthBusiness presents its ranking of the brokers, nomads, auditors and lawyers most active on AIM.

Since the GrowthBusiness AIM Adviser Index was last updated, Cenkos Securities has become the pre-eminent nominated adviser on London’s junior market.

It has 75 clients worth an aggregate £5 billion, while the previous holder of the top spot in the nomad tables, Seymour Pierce, has slipped to fourth place with 64 clients. Cenkos has been growing its AIM client list, adding a net 13 companies since last year.

Also ahead of Seymour Pierce are finnCap, with 71 clients worth £1.1 billion, and Canaccord Genuity, which represents 66 AIM companies valued at a combined £9.4 billion. The latter firm would top the table if it was arranged in order of clients’ total market capitalisation.

The vast majority of AIM companies employ the same firm as both nomad and broker, so the first two tables below contain many of the same names. However, the order of precedence is slightly different: Canaccord Genuity is the leading broker, with 79 clients worth £10.5 billion, followed very closely by finnCap, which boasts the same number of clients but represents only £1.8 billion of AIM market value. Two brokers that do not appear among the top ten nomads are Shore Capital and Daniel Stewart, each of which has 42 clients.

Since we began compiling this ranking in 2007, Grant Thornton has remained at the top of the AIM auditor rankings, and retains a comfortable gap over second-placed KPMG by number of clients served (175 versus 132). However, PricewaterhouseCoopers is the number one auditor by market capitalisation of its clients: they are worth £12.3 billion, compared to £10.8 billion for Deloitte and £8.4 billion each for Grant Thornton and KPMG. A new entrant in the auditor table this year is Crowe Clark Whitehill, now the tenth most significant AIM accountant with 22 clients worth £414 million.

As ever, the market for AIM lawyers is more fragmented than that for nomads, brokers and accountants. Lawrence Graham maintains its lead, with 39 clients worth £4.6 billion, followed by Memery Crystal and Eversheds, whose positions have reversed since 2011. Fourth-placed, as last year, is Pinsent Masons, while fifth comes Fasken Martineau, the only legal firm not to appear in last year’s ranking.

The AIM Adviser Index will be updated on a twice-yearly basis, in June and December.


Leading brokers   No of clients   Clients’ mkt cap (£m)
Cenkos Securities             75                  5,021
finnCap             71                  1,117
Canaccord Genuity             66                  9,387
Seymour Pierce             64                  3,080
WH Ireland             60                     934
Westhouse Securities             52                  1,081
Panmure Gordon             43                  2,483
Numis             38                  3,698
Grant Thornton             37                  2,385
N+1 Brewin             35                  1,530
Total           541                30,717


Leading nomads   No of clients   Clients’ mkt cap (£m)
Canaccord Genuity             79                10,495
finnCap             79                  1,757
Cenkos Securities             77                  5,135
Seymour Pierce             64                  2,998
WH Ireland             60                     830
Westhouse Securities             58                  1,854
Numis             55                  6,339
Panmure Gordon             52                  3,117
Shore Capital             42                     860
Daniel Stewart             42                     676
Total           608                34,120


Leading auditors   No of clients   Clients’ mkt cap (£m)
Grant Thornton            175                  8,385
KPMG            132                  8,370
BDO            129                  6,755
Deloitte            105                10,787
PricewaterhouseCoopers            104                12,360
Ernst & Young              67                  5,593
Baker Tilly              67                  2,606
PKF              36                  1,221
Nexia Smith & Williamson              25                     754
Crowe Clark Whitehill              22                     414
Total            862


Leading solicitors   No of clients   Clients’ mkt cap (£m)
Lawrence Graham               39                   4,627
Memery Crystal               32                   2,769
Eversheds               29                   1,938
Pinsent Masons               29                      917
Fasken Martineau               26                   1,551
Field Fisher Waterhouse               26                      703
Norton Rose               25                   1,068
Stephenson Harwood               24                   2,866
Berwin Leighton Paisner               23                   5,108
Osborne Clarke               21                   2,357
Total             274

Source: Vitesse Media Research (correct at 26/6/2012, except for market capitalisation data which is from London Stock Exchange statistics correct at the end of the previous month). The GrowthBusiness AIM Adviser Index (previously known as the Business XL AIM Adviser Index) is intended as a snapshot of the market and Vitesse Media Research is not responsible for errors or omissions in the information provided by AIM-listed companies about their advisers.

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.