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In many cases, the end of the year gives you time to step back and take stock of the last 12 months. This is when many of us take a hard look at what worked and what did not, complete performance reviews, and formulate plans for the coming year. For me, it is all of those things plus a time when I u...
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Matrix and Marquest Announce Proposed Business Combination

TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwire) -- 02/14/13 -- Matrix Asset Management Inc. (TSX:MTA) ("Matrix") and Marquest Asset Management Inc. ("Marquest") are pleased to announce they have signed a Letter of Intent to pursue a business combination (the "Transaction") which would result in significant benefits to both parties. Following the Transaction, the Board of Matrix and its senior management team will include representation from both organizations.

David Levi, CEO of Matrix, commented, "This merger is an ideal fit because our two organizations share so many common business activities. This presents a tremendous opportunity for us to realize significant synergies, attain greater scale and build on our strengths."

The Transaction


--  Under the proposed Transaction, privately-held Marquest will combine
    with Matrix by way of a share exchange. Marquest shareholders are
    expected to receive treasury common shares of Matrix totaling 35%(1) of
    Matrix's issued shares, post-closing, in exchange for all shares of
    Marquest. In addition, Marquest's capital markets business will be spun-
    off to Marquest's existing shareholders(2). 

--  Under the Letter of Intent, the parties have agreed to use their best
    efforts, on a timely basis, to negotiate and execute definitive
    documentation and take all steps necessary to close the Transaction.
    Closing, which is scheduled for March 22, 2013, is subject to customary
    closing conditions(3), including obtaining necessary shareholder, stock
    exchange and regulatory approvals. 

Andrew McKay, CEO of Marquest, commented, "We very much look forward to joining forces with Matrix, building on our combined business, and accessing new growth opportunities."

Summary of Expected Benefits

The proposed business combination is expected to yield the following benefits:


--  Additional substantial equity and working capital for the merged
    business, 

--  Significant cost savings from rationalization and operating synergies, 

--  Larger scale, diversified asset management platform, 

--  A stronger combined management team, and 

--  Greater growth opportunities. 

Other Provisions

The Letter of Intent also provides for the following significant matters:

Break Fees - A $500,000 break fee will be payable by either party to the other if that party fails to perform its obligations to pursue completion of the Transaction, or, on or before March 22, 2013, completes an alternative transaction that results in non-completion of the Transaction. However, if the Transaction does not close because Matrix accepts and completes an alternative transaction under a continuing process it initiated prior to the Letter of Intent, and Marquest has in good faith performed its obligations under the Letter of Intent, then Matrix will be required to pay Marquest a larger $750,000 break fee.

Grandfathered Items - Performance fees from Marquest managed or advised funds prior to Closing and gains on sales of securities acquired as a result of Marquest's capital markets unit activities prior to Closing, will be grandfathered to the existing Marquest shareholders (the cumulative total of such amounts paid to the existing Marquest shareholders being the "Grandfathered Amount"). However, to potentially offset this, any performance fees, IPA dividends or carried interest earned from any investment funds managed or advised by Matrix prior to Closing will not be for the benefit of the existing Marquest shareholders, until the total of such amounts equals the Grandfathered Amount.

CORNERSTONE GROUP(TM) acted as Exclusive Agent to Matrix on this Transaction.

Important Notes:

(1) The 35% figure is based on Marquest shareholders tendering all of Marquest's issued and outstanding shares/equity interest. It will be a lesser prorated percentage if less than all such Marquest shares are tendered at Closing.

(2) Marquest conducts an exempt market dealer, capital markets business which assists issuers in raising capital. This unit will be spun-off to the existing Marquest shareholders. Marquest, as a subsidiary of Matrix, will have a 20% minority, participating interest in this unit, commencing 2.5 years after Closing. This spun-off capital markets unit will operate independently of Matrix.

(3) Closing of the Transaction is subject to satisfaction or waiver of conditions agreed to by the parties. It is unknown at this time if these conditions will be satisfied or waived.

About Matrix

Matrix Asset Management Inc. (TSX:MTA) is a diversified asset and wealth management company, with approximately $1.1 billion in assets under management and offices across Canada. Matrix's mission is to provide a diverse array of investment choices and the best possible investment management service to Canadian investors and institutions. Matrix delivers its services through three main operating subsidiaries serving institutional, high net worth and retail investors.

About Marquest

Marquest Asset Management Inc. is a private Canadian investment management firm incorporated in 1986 that offers a diverse range of investment products covering a variety of equity and fixed-income products. Marquest has $200 million in assets under management, advisory or administration.

Forward-looking statements: Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on beliefs and assumptions at the time the statements are made, including beliefs and assumptions about successful integration of acquired operations and the availability of potential growth or acquisition opportunities. While management considers these beliefs and assumptions to be reasonable based on information currently available to it, they are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties and no assurance can be given that such beliefs and assumptions will prove to be correct. Accordingly, actual results may differ significantly from those expressed or implied by forward-looking statements due to many factors including, but not limited to, risks associated with completing acquisitions and successfully integrating acquired operations. Many of these risks are beyond the control of Matrix. Other than as specifically required by law, Matrix undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which such statements are made, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise.

Contacts:
Matrix Asset Management Inc.
David Levi
CEO
(604) 895-7274 or (416) 934-7700
david.levi@matrixasset.ca

Contacts:
Marquest Asset Management Inc.
Andrew A. McKay
CEO
(416) 777-7312
amckay@marquest.ca

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Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

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