‘Advisers could not carry out IIM diligence before signing Towry contract’

Edward Jones advisers were not able to carry out due diligence on Towry’s independent investment management service before they signed Towry employment contracts, a former Edward Jones adviser has claimed.

James Chandler was one of the seven advisers against whom Towry brought its High Court case alleging breaches of non-solicitation clauses.

Chandler says Towry assumed that its IIM proposition would be suitable for all Edward Jones clients but advisers were not given the opportunity to investigate the system for themselves.

He says: “It showed an extremely high level of arrogance that all clients would choose the proposition. What was very evident was Towry was talking about what was best for the firm and the IIM, it was not talking about what was best for the client. We had initial introductions with Towry but the firm did not let us see the IIM before we signed the contract.”

Chandler adds that Towry gave him a target to transfer 100 per cent of his branch’s assets to the IIM platform within 12 months if he joined the firm.

In her judgment, Mrs Justice Cox said: “While many of those present were asking for more details about the IIM, such details were not forthcoming. The line being taken was that all would be explained in the training course fixed to take place in December 2009, which would be after the advisers had signed their new contracts of employment.”

Towry declined to comment.