The FCA’s decision to ban former Tailormade Independent Limited chief executive Alistair Burns has been upheld by the Upper Tribunal.
Between January 2010 and January 2013, Tailormade gave advice to 1,661 customers who were considering transferring or switching their existing pension funds via Sipps into unregulated investments, such as green oil, biofuels, farmland and overseas property.
The Tribunal has ruled that the overseas investments were indeed “inherently risky” and that the customers were given unsuitable advice.
Burns has been handed a £60,000 fine – almost four times less than the £233,600 the regulator first called for in December 2016.
Customers invested a total of £112m into the alternative investments under recommendation from Tailormade.
The regulator says Burns benefited significantly though his dual position as director and shareholder of an unregulated introducer also operating under the Tailormade banner.
Compensation totalling more than £55m has already been paid out to customers by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.
FCA executive director of enforcement and market oversight, Mark Steward says: “Mr Burns failed to ensure that Tailormade managed its conflicts of interest. Our action sends a strong message that failing to manage conflicts of interest fairly and disclose them clearly is completely unacceptable.”