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    SL.   GB00BF8Q6K64

STANDARD LIFE ABERDEEN PLC

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To 'e' or not to 'e'? Call us Abrdn, says UK asset manager Standard Life Aberdeen

04/26/2021 | 04:10am EDT
Standard Life Aberdeen changes its name to Abrdn

LONDON, April 26 (Reuters) - British asset manager Standard Life Aberdeen is changing its name to "Abrdn PLC," abandoning the letter "e" in phone-text fashion as part of a plan to modernize its brand.

The new name, unveiled on Monday, will still be pronounced "Aberdeen" and comes after the company sold its Standard Life brand to life insurer Phoenix earlier this year.

The Edinburgh-headquartered company said the name change would also allow it to own digital assets such as apps and websites, without confusion with the city of Aberdeen.

"Our new brand Abrdn builds on our heritage and is modern, dynamic and, most importantly, engaging," said Chief Executive Stephen Bird, who joined the firm last year. "It is a highly-differentiated brand that will create unity across the business, replacing five different brand names."

The company, a sponsor of the Scottish Open golf tournament and Edinburgh International Festival, declined to disclose the amount spent on the rebrand, which was designed by agency Wolff Olins.

The Standard Life Aberdeen (SLA) name change is the latest in a long line of corporate rebranding exercises, some of which have gone better than others.

Royal Mail changed its name to Consignia in 2001, for example, only to drop the rebrand the following year. PwC briefly changed the name of its consulting arm to "Monday" in 2002, weeks before IBM then bought the business and dropped the name.

'SOME VOWELS, PLEASE'

Laith Khalaf, financial analyst at fund platform AJ Bell, said the Abrdn name would "likely leave investors feeling dazed and confused."

"Don't be surprised if stakeholders ask for some vowels, please," he added.

SLA's shares jumped 2.5%, though, outperforming the FTSE 100 .

Standard Life merged with Aberdeen-based Aberdeen Asset Management in 2017 and Phoenix bought SLA's European and UK insurance businesses the following year.

Phoenix took on the Standard Life brand from SLA in Feb 2021 and sold back some of the businesses it bought in 2018, as the pair simplified their partnership.

The Abrdn rebranding process will begin in the summer with the aim of creating a "digitally-enabled brand that will also be used for all the company's client-facing businesses globally," SLA said.

There will be a "full stakeholder engagement plan" to manage the change, it added. (Reporting by Simon Jessop and Carolyn Cohn Editing by Rachel Armstrong, Kirsten Donovan and Pravin Char)


© Reuters 2021
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
PHOENIX GROUP HOLDINGS PLC 1.43% 724.6 Delayed Quote.3.43%
ROYAL MAIL PLC 0.24% 590.2 Delayed Quote.74.77%
STANDARD LIFE ABERDEEN PLC 2.19% 284.7 Delayed Quote.1.21%
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Financials
Sales 2021 1 483 M 2 092 M 2 092 M
Net income 2021 230 M 324 M 324 M
Net cash 2021 887 M 1 251 M 1 251 M
P/E ratio 2021 21,3x
Yield 2021 5,23%
Capitalization 6 016 M 8 485 M 8 485 M
EV / Sales 2021 3,46x
EV / Sales 2022 3,27x
Nbr of Employees 6 029
Free-Float 97,7%
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 18
Average target price 308,59 GBX
Last Close Price 284,70 GBX
Spread / Highest target 32,1%
Spread / Average Target 8,39%
Spread / Lowest Target -12,2%
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Managers and Directors
NameTitle
Stephen Bird Chief Executive Officer & Director
Stephanie Bruce Chief Financial Officer & Executive Director
Douglas Jardine Flint Chairman
Mark Jonathan Dixon Chief Information Officer
Mike Tumilty Global Chief Operating Officer
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