Despite the season, IFAs should keep their umbrellas handy in case they
get caught in a hail of chequebooks.
The price range is dumbfounding, from around £18,000 per adviser
offered by one insurer to an estimated £357,000 paid per RI at one
recently acquired national.
These are rough figures but providers are stumping up the cash. The dash
for distribution is upon us. Clearly, the uncertainty over polarisation is
a catalyst for change. But the spate of deals does not make multi-ties
inevitable. Some buys are defensive, others fit with long-term advice-led
strategies although others will take advantage of change.
Money Marketing was the only newspaper to campaign to keep polarisation.
Our position remains unchanged. We will not demonise providers which decide
on a multi-tied strategy and understand if some IFA businesses believe the
hostile environment forces them to tie. But we continue to advocate
polarisation. Too much of the self-belief of advisers and IFA entrepreneurs
is best served by independence. It is also best for consu-mers. The poles
should remain apart.