A modern vision, gained from over 200 years of experience.
For over 200 years, we’ve been working with our clients to support their wealth needs. By getting to know you and your family, we’re perfectly placed to adapt as your needs change over time, which is just one of the reasons many of our clients have trusted us for generations.
We’re here to meet the needs of people who refuse to settle for old-fashioned trade-offs.
You should never have to choose between pursuing profit and investing responsibly. Between global insight and personalised service. Between technological efficiency and human understanding.
We refuse to be constrained by either/or thinking. We don’t believe in these trade-offs.
Being part of Quintet expands our scale, security and adds a truly global outlook to our already strong foundations. Together, we form a boutique of private banks and wealth managers operating across 50 European cities, which together manage over €72.6bn of assets (as at 31 December 2018).
Irish merchant Alexander Brown sets up an import-export business in Baltimore, and in 1810 his son William Brown establishes William Brown & Co. in Liverpool.
William Brown is joined by a new partner, Joseph Shipley. Together, they finance shipping merchants, pioneering payment via ‘Letters of Credit’. The now familiar reputation for honesty, integrity and reliability grows.
The firm, now known as Brown Shipley & Co., reach transactions of £10m a year, while weathering financial instability that causes many other merchants to fail. They expand their shipping interests with their own ships and warehouses.
The American Civil War forces a shift in business focus towards merchant banking, which rapidly expands. There is also a physical shift, with London becoming the primary base for Brown Shipley & Co., now renowned for acceptance of credits, foreign exchange and deposit banking. To this day, we remain at the same location, at the heart of the financial world, next to the Bank of England.
Sir William Brown becomes appointed High Sheriff of Liverpool, an MP and a campaigner for free trade, the penny post and even decimal coinage. In 1887, partner Sir Mark Collet is appointed Governor of the Bank of England.
A specialist office is opened to cater for American travellers’ increasing use of the firm’s Letters of Credit, handling up to 350,000 a year.
In 1918, the partnership between Brown Shipley & Co. and the American Brown Brothers is officially ended, but they continued to work together for some time. In 1920, Lord Norman (Grandson of Sir Mark Collett) is himself appointed Governor of the Bank of England, after following in his Grandfather’s footsteps by becoming a partner in Brown Shipley & Co. Lord Norman remains the longest serving Governor, retiring in 1944.
Despite foreign exchange and commercial credits coming under wartime restriction, Brown Shipley& Co. endures throughout World War II, and in 1946 becomes a Limited Company.
By this time, the company has a prominent role in the London money market and develops an Investment Advisory Service, which provides an outlet for the company’s heritage and expertise in evaluating business deals and the people behind them.
In 1992 Brown Shipley & Co. Ltd is acquired by European bank KBL and joins its group of Private Bankers. At the turn of the millennium, Brown Shipley subsequently makes its own acquisitions of stockbroker Cawood Smithie, private-client investment manager Henry Cooke and in 2001, pensions and investment manager Fairmount Group plc.
After celebrating our bicentenary in 2010, Brown Shipley expand to new premises in Manchester, Edinburgh and Birmingham, complementing the newly refurbished London building, giving the company contemporary homes to match our thoroughly modern outlook.
Three further acquisitions serve to broaden and strengthen our offering: Hampton Dean, a chartered independent firm of financial planners gives us a Nottingham base in 2015; The Roberts Partnership, a financial planning and wealth management firm based in Manchester joins in 2016; while 2017 sees us acquire the UK branch of Insinger de Beaufort.
As part of Brown Shipley’s continued growth strategy in 2018, Alan Mathewson was appointed as CEO, followed by Rory Tapner being named Chair of the Board in 2019. These key appointments have built upon the strong foundations already in place within Brown Shipley, along with supporting the continued growth of the business. The acquisition of NW Brown, a wealth manager with offices in Cambridge and Norwich, in 2019 gives Brown Shipley a strong base in East Anglia and sees AUM grow to £9bn.
Official Wealth Management Partner of Lancashire County Cricket Club and Emirates Old Trafford.
Official Wealth Management Partner of Connect Yorkshire.
At Brown Shipley we’re committed to becoming one of the UK’s leading private client wealth managers, built on strong, long-term relationships and an unrivalled level of service. It’s an approach that means our people are our most valued asset. So we’re always proud when the industry acknowledges our hard work and expertise.