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Friends offends again

Bungle Busters makes a special comeback this week after Friends Provident&#39s tied salesforce again wrote to IFA clients offering financial advice.

The life office has left an IFA disgusted after his clients rec-eived letters from Friends&#39 First Call salesforce offering advice on inheritance tax planning.

Friends has finally admitted it is “having problems” after a spate of incidents reported in Money Marketing over the last year. It blames the problems on the external company which supplies its mailing lists.

It says the problem occurs because direct-sales staff buy lists of potential customers from the company but do not edit them before contacting people.

Leonard J Mace & Co sole trader Leonard Mace says: “I am disgusted with Friends causing an unlevel playing field between direct sales and the IFA channel by not editing their lists. IFAs are getting treated worse and worse and getting less support. The end result is I do not want to do business with Friends anymore.”

Friends communications manager Jim Murdoch says: “It is impossible to edit the lists before they go out as the job is too massive. But we do not want to be seen as poaching IFA clients. We are hoping to sort this out and be able to edit the lists before the invitations are sent in the future.”

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