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IFAs need to widen range

IFA firms offering independent, multi-tied and execution-only services will be the most successful business model in the post-RDR world, according to a panel of industry experts.

At the Money Marketing RDR and economic update last week, Ernst & Young financial services partner Shaun Crawford said organisations will need to offer a more diverse range of services alongside independent advice. He said: “The bigger the organisation, the wider the range of distribution they are going to need.”

Independent consultant John Cowan said the RDR is going to be a big driver of consolidation in the industry.

But he added: “That does not mean the small IFA will not succeed, they will still deal with high-net-worth people and they will be successful in their own right.”

Positive Solutions chief executive Jim Reeve agreed firms will have to offer a range of services, including non-independent advice, post-RDR.

He added that the IFA of the future must also be more confident about their offering.

He said: “I suspect that there is an element for some of a victim mentality that they think they are inferior to banks and are penalised by the regulator. I think that great IFA busin- esses are confident about what they do and stand up and tell the world how great they are. I think that will be a very distinct difference between what we have now and what we will have in the future.”

Bankhall managing director of IFA services David Golder said: “I have a concern that there is a great deal of focus on regulation and responding to that regulation as opposed to offering what I think is the objective and that is a genuine service and advice to a wider consumer base.”

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