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40 RIs could go as BBB reviews planning arms

IFA group Berkeley Berry Birch is conducting a strategic review of its three financial planning arms which could see up to 40 RIs being made redundant or moving to other parts of the group.

It has identified a number of “non-income producing” advisers who will be given the choice of either moving or leaving as BBB attempts to cut costs.

Its three financial planning arms, Berry Birch & Noble, Professional Financial Solutions and Weston, currently have between 130 and 140 RIs. The review will see that number reduced to around 100, with all the losses expected to come from BBN.

Any more of a cull and BBB says the model would no longer be sustainable.

Those whose jobs could be threatened include managers who are RIs but may not be advising and IFAs not meeting targets. Some will be given the option of going to PFS or Weston, as these advisers operate on a self-employed basis.

Despite the reorganisation, which is expected to be completed by the end of the week, BBB has not ruled out further acquisitions, saying it is looking at both small and bigs IFA companies.

It has recently been linked to National IFA RJ Temple, which is known to be seeking a buyer.

BBB deputy chief executive Steve Ingledew says: “There will be some people who leave the group. There are non-income producers who will be given the choice of joining another part of the group, becoming income producers or leaving.”

A rival, who did not want to be named, says: “I think that the risk they are running within the BBN side means there could be a domino effect and the whole thing could implode. There also may be questions about the financial viability of the group as a whole.”

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