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Ken Davy to launch new restricted national firm


SimplyBiz chairman Ken Davy is launching a new restricted national advice business which he aims to grow into one of the biggest nationals in the UK.

He says the firm, which has not yet been branded, is likely to be a separate entity to the SimplyBiz Group but SimplyBiz will invest around £2m in the business.

The move, revealed in this week’s Money Marketing, will see Steve Braidford, managing director of SimplyBiz’s training arm New Model Business Academy, become the national’s managing director.

Davy, whose role in the new firm has not yet been decided, says: “This will be a ground-breaking proposition which has the potential to make a bigger impact on the sector than the launch of SimplyBiz. We believe part of the market is currently underwhelmed with old-style offerings which have gone stale and deliver little value.”

He says the national will not look to attract SimplyBiz members, most of whom want to remain independent or directly regulated. He says: “We will not be looking at bringing SimplyBiz members across because they are, by and large, operating a different kind of business model and would prefer to remain directly authorised.”

Davy says the business, ref-erred to internally as Refresher, will offer a “wide-ranging” restricted model. He says there will be talks with providers about panels over the next couple of months. It is awaiting FSA approval but is expected to launch in late summer or early autumn.

Davy founded support services firm SimplyBiz in 2002. It serves over 2,000 firms and aro-und 5,000 advisers. He previously spent 18 years at network DBS, which he set up in 1983.

Bloomsbury Financial Planning partner Jason Butler says: “I am sure there will be many entrepreneurial characters laun-ching businesses after the RDR. Looking at Ken’s track record,
I would imagine he probably has the foresight to make this work.”


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There are 8 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Ironic given the list of related articles and past comments

  2. I think this kind of business is going to be a fantastic home for the vast majority of IFA’s (current definition), whether it is with Ken or a different firm. My current network is looking at its model and will offer both Independent & restricted offerings post RDR. Having spoken in detail to the director leading this change she confirmed that when they looked at the various business lines done over the last 12 years, around 97% of members currently fall into the “restricted” category new definitions. Apart from various providers merging and subsequently dissapering (ie the likes of clerical medical to scot widows etc) the top 10 providers of pensions, bonds, UT’s & ISA’s has not changed with the exception of the addition of a couple of new providers coming to the table. She is convinced, as am I that for network members anyway, going to what we would currently call panels in our business, is going to be where the vast majority of members should be. If you are only going to be selling pensions & investments after RDR, and using the same companies then as now. Why would anyone want to put themselves through the additional hassle and costs of true independence (according the FSA definition) to arrive at the same recommendation for a pension or Investment provider as they would have done anyway using the restricted model? It doesnt make commercial sense. The problem is going to be “selling the concept” of being restricted, as this is a psycological comfort blanket. When she looked at the stationary of the membership (who trade as AR firms) there were only 17 members who had “independent Financial Adviser” as their title under their name on business cards. It was usually “Partner”, “Principal”, “Director” or “Associate”. It is important that we get this message across to as many Advisers as possible that there is nothing, I mean nothing, wrong with not classifying yourself as not being Independent, it is all in the mind. We will be the same people giving the same great service for our clients as we have done for many years. After the initial bedding period our clients will notice little or no difference. As the local say in this part of the country “Them’s my thoughts” for what they are worth.

  3. The best bit is the end of liabilities, they rest at the door of networks and ‘national’ firms.

  4. So, the virulent promoter of IFA services now appears to have gone over to the dark side.

    Clients are not fools. IFA services is really the only route all quality providers of advice should follow, we are often lambasted for being “sales” oriented but isn’t that just what “restricted” is going to become.

    I can see no sensible reason to give up being an IFA after 22 yrs service to my clients.

  5. Soren Lorenson 23rd May 2012 at 11:54 am

    Ned …I don’t think Ken is asking you to give up independence. I think he makes it clear that this new offering is a home for some good IFA’s who use a small panel of providers and may find themselves homeless after December.

    BTW – do you not have any better pictures of Ken Davy? He looks like the Grinch in the one at the top of this article – you must be able to find one that is more flattering.

  6. So is this restriction as in the providers that can be used…. or restriction in the business areas available…?

    Most IFA’s I presume will be going Restricted (Whole of Market) as in Specialist…

    If your brain hurts, you need a brain surgeon, not a GP…. Clients that can afford fees can usually work that out…?

  7. i would not be surprised if part of the reason was so they can punt funds and white-labelled solutions.

  8. John Blackmore 25th May 2012 at 12:07 pm

    @ Edward

    Agree completely. Any IFA who thinks that having passed Q Level 4 will somehow make them qualified and will impress is in for a rude awakening.

    I don’t see a very large market segment being willing to pay fees for a jack of all trades service.

    Serious complex advice will inevitably be given by those who provide whole of market Restricted advice.

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