Specialist alternative asset manager Gresham House is acquiring FIM Services in a deal that is expected to more than double its managed assets to over £1.5bn (€1.70bn).

The London-listed firm is proposing to buy the alternative investment fund manager specialising in UK real assets for up to £25m on a cash-free, debt-free basis. As at 31 December 2017, FIM’s asset under management was £893m.

To part fund the acquisition, Gresham House said it intends to raise £15m by placing new shares at 410p each.

The combined group will operate across five specialist alternative investment strategies which include forestry, new energy, UK housing and infrastructure, private assets and strategic public equity.

The combined group would manage more than 100,000 hectares of commercial forestry.

Anthony Dalwood, Gresham House CEO, said: “The acquisition of FIM will allow Gresham House to achieve scale and establish a market leading position as an investor in UK commercial forestry whilst also enhancing the Gresham House New Energy division.

”Over the last three years, we have rapidly established Gresham House as a platform for growth for specialist asset management teams. The strategic rationale, alongside the potential financial returns, are clear and exciting for Gresham House shareholders.”

Richard Crosbie Dawson, the managing director of FIM, said: “We have a complementary client base to Gresham House and our combined expertise and experience will facilitate new investment opportunities. We are excited about what the future holds.”