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Host closes branches and cuts admin after Aim flop

IFA Host Partnership is closing down its branch network and scaling

back its admin support, blaming a poor response to its proposed Aim

flotation.

The move, which Host describes as a change to its charging structure,

will see the closure of 13 regional offices and around 100 RIs

looking for new premises by the end of February.

Host parent HST Financial is stressing that so far there have been no

job losses. It says Host Part-nership&#39s members are all self-employed

and that around 30 per cent have already moved to their own premises.

The HST Financial group comprises IFA network Sage and a support

group for non-FSA regulated business, Trinon. It says the closure

will see Host members&#39 services and charges more closely aligned with

those of its Sage network members.

It has blamed the poor investment environment following September 11

for the low interest in its Aim listing, which sought to raise

£10m.

HST Financial chief operating executive Philip Lockyer says: “We have

been working on this for some time. The members can continue to be

branded as Host and we want to keep the partnership going. The loss

of certain localised support services comes at a time when our

membership are sufficiently established to move their businesses

forward and many have already made the move to their own premises.”

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