Australia-based Pacific Equity Partners (PEP) and Canada-based CIBC Mellon Trust have signed a definitive agreement for PEP to purchase CIBC Mellon Trust’s issuer services business through PEP’s portfolio company, Canadian Stock Transfer (CST).

PEP has said that it has made significant investments in businesses with specialist operations in share registry services, superannuation administration and investor relations.

PEP has formed a network of strategic partnerships under Link Market Services, which has expanded beyond Australia into global markets such as India, South Africa, the UK, the US and, now, Canada.

CST will join forces with American Stock Transfer (AST) to become the North American division of The Link Group.

Mark Healy, president and CEO of AST, will assume responsibility for implementing the network’s North American strategy as president and CEO of both CST and AST.

The transaction, subject to regulatory approvals, is expected to close in October 2010, with the company operating as Canadian Stock Transfer, or CST, part of The Link Group network.

Paul McCullagh, founder and Link chairman at PEP, said: “Expanding our capability and presence in Canada should signal to our clients and to the market that we are serious about enhancing our global share registry business and delivering world-class service to clients.”