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Andrew Strange wins plaudits for Aifa role

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Advisers have praised Aifa policy director Andrew Strange’s contribution to the IFA market following this week’s announcement he is leaving.

On Tuesday, Aifa announced that Strange is leaving in October after more than four years at the body to pursue other opportunities in financial services.

Yellowtail Financial Planning managing director Dennis Hall says: “I think Andrew has done a very good job as policy director. He has always been very on the ball and aware of the current issues in the IFA market. I am concerned that Aifa has lost two experienced people, Chris Cummings and Andrew Strange, in a short time, while Stephen Gay is still getting his feet under the table. Filling Andrew’s shoes will be a difficult job, Aifa needs to find someone like him who can negotiate at the highest level.”

West Riding Personal Financial Solutions managing director Neil Liversidge says Strange has made an “immense contribution” to Aifa. He adds: “He will be difficult to replace but because he has built up a strong research and policy team, there will not be a hiatus when he leaves.”

Aifa director general Stephen Gay says: “Andrew’s work on detailed regulatory issues from the RDR to the role of European regulation demonstrates the depth of his knowledge of the industry. He has played an extremely important part in delivering a better outcome for members and we wish him well.”

Strange says: “I will miss participating in the breadth and intellectual rigour of the Aifa group of trade bodies but I look forward to continuing my career in financial services.”

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Readers' comments (9)

  • another one who has seen the writing on the wall!

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  • I too would add my thanks for his excellent contribution and while I regret his departure particularly at this time, I (and others within our firm) wish him well.

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  • "The writing on the wall" to quote the "old IFA" above is that directly authorised firms get all the benefits of the hard work put in by Andrew and the team at AIFA without having to join and contribute to their costs. If that pricks anyone's conscience the answer must be to stop free-loading and pay your subscription. That is the only way we will have a viable and effective trade body representing our interests at home and in Europe!

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  • That is the trouble Dick
    Aifa stopped representing our interests long ago.
    Why should we pay for them to represent the interests of others?

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  • To "anonymous"
    I have spent 4 years on the AIFA council representing the smaller directly authorised members. If they do not represent our interests I am curious to know whose interests you consider they do represent?

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  • No loss to anyone as he never did anything anyway apart from appease the regulator.

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  • Have I totally misread something here? An organisation that takes members' subscriptions while being ready and willing to act against said members' interests reckons that those who refuse to join or have left should be concerned as to whether 'that pricks anyone's conscience' ???

    Stephen Gay completes his strategic review and another Director resigns without another offer on the cards? Not a good PR week for Aifa I'd say.

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  • Dick

    What benefits? To me Aifa is against us! The sooner it closes the better!

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  • Examples of how AIFA has represented our interests:

    • AIFA's Diploma in Investment Planning is helping many IFAs to reach Level 4 using a straightforward case study – based exam.
    • AIFA's probing on the Keydata interim levy forced the FSA to issue an open letter allowing IFAs to resubmit their tariff data
    • The recent delay announced on capital adequacy requirements comes after persistent lobbying by AIFA and others.
    • On RDR, the TSC has adopted a position very close to AIFA’s policy. Steve Gay has pushed the FSA to publish guidelines for individual dispensations from the 2012 deadline, and it is now hinting that this may be announced soon.
    • After ten months of lobbying work on the Consumer Focus enquiry the report was much altered and received little traction. AIFA's response in the press was forceful and forced Consumer Focus to take a defensive line.

    Those who are against the qualifications requirement of RDR must realise that a significant number of AIFA's members fully support the FSA's stance on this so it finds itself a "house divided" on this subject!

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