Aifa and IFA Promotion are setting up a joint company to create a combined
strategy for promoting independent advice, ending months of speculation of
the two organisations merging.
In a letter obtained by Money Marketing, IFAP tells its sponsors that
plans for a merger fell apart because Aifa wants to be independent from
Instead, a new jointly owned company, with the working title Newco, will
be set up to decide an overall strategy on how best to promote IFAs.
Newco's board will contain five IFAP directors and five from Aifa, with an
independent chairman yet to be announced. IFAP chief executive David Elms
and Aifa director general Paul Smee will both be on the board.
IFAP's board will be made up of product providers. Its resources will be
used to implement Newco's decisions.
Aifa, however, will remain independent and Newco will have no input into
But IFAs remain sceptical that Newco will achieve results in promoting
IFAP chairman Douglas Claisse announced his retirement in the letter. A
successor has yet to be appointed.
Aifa director general Paul Smee says: “This is a sensible, pragmatic and
speedy way forward to ensure a good strategy for promotion between Aifa and
IFAP. It avoids great structural upheaval and allows us to get on with the
issues at hand like the polarisation review.”
Elms says: “This is an elegant solution as Aifa is left free to maintain
its independent stance and IFAP's role remains unch-anged. Newco will
co-ordinate and strengthen the integrity of Aifa's and IFAP's stance.”
Richard Jacobs Pension & Trustee Services director Richard Jacobs says:
“This is not going to achieve anything. Both organisations are enshrined in
old-fashioned values and have vested interests.
“We need one organisation to control promotion but they are pussyfooting
around with a watered-down version.”