Court says farewell to UBS

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The Independent Online
COURT Cavendish Group, the nursing home operator that went public last year, is changing its City advisers.

Tomorrow it will announce that it is replacing UBS with Smith New Court as stockbroker and Samuel Montagu as banker. Last month the company appointed Millbank Public Relations in place of Brunswick.

Dr Chai Patel, Court's chairman, said: "We have been debating the fact that, as a small company, we should separate the role of merchant bank and broker, which until now have both been performed by UBS. When the analyst who followed us, Andrew Richmond, left UBS we felt it was important to have a dedicated analyst.''

When Court floated in July 1993, the public offer was twice subscribed at 225p, but the shares opened at 207p after a rival placing flooded the market. They rose to 270p at one point this year before falling to 212p. The price today is 235p. "UBS are an excellent house with a great reputation," Dr Patel said. "They did a superb job for us on the flotation, but their main reputation has been with FT-SE 100 companies. They tell me that there isn't a public company chairman who is happy with his share price.''

Nevertheless a UBS source pointed out that 60 of the firm's 100 corporate clients are in the smaller category, and that they devote considerable resources to that sector.