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Lifeboat to unite four divisions in one brand and license advisers by product

Midlands-based Lifeboat Financial Group is bringing its four divisions into one single adviser division and will license its advisers by product area.

The group is amalgamating the four divisions into Lifeboat Financial so it can trade under one brand name and bring its mortgage and general insurance brokers over to the regulated environment.

The group has 114 RIs in its A la Carte network and with Start IFA but it wants to build the total to 500 by the end of the year, bringing across as many advisers as possible from its non-regulated network Simply Assured, which has 300 firms, and Simply Direct, which has 1,500 agents.

The RIs will no longer be called IFAs by the company but will be licensed as mortgage, insurance or investment advisers and will pay network charges according to division.

The group is owned by 76 different shareholders but is looking to sign a £2m funding deal with a single investor in the next six months.

Lifeboat Financial Group chief executive officer David Kitchen says: “We believe we are building a proposition that will be attractive to individuals joining us. We intend to concentrate on organic growth and are not interested in acquisitions.

“One of the reasons that the bigger IFA firms are falling over is that they offer the one-size-fits-all option. It is not working and cross-subsidies really get people&#39s backs up. I think that we will be the first to offer separate licences for different areas of advice but others will follow.”

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