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Sesame restricted move prompts 6% member exit

Sesame Bankhall Group has seen 6 per cent of its members leave the network since announcing plans to move to a restricted model.

In January Sesame Bankhall Group told network members they had six months to move to its restricted option, become directly authorised under its Bankhall brand or leave the firm altogether.

The firm said that supporting “non-mainstream investment areas” such as agricultural property investments was unsustainable and carried too much risk.

In a business update sent to members today, seen by Money Marketing, Sesame Bankhall Group executive chairman John Cowan says 94 per cent of members have stayed with the network.

Its member numbers have fallen from 1,133 in January to 1,070 currently.

Cowan says that of the 63 firms which have left, just over a third have joined other networks.

Around a quarter have become directly authorised through the Bankhall brand, and the remainder have either exited the industry or had their membership terminated by Sesame. Cowan says this is generally a result of Sesame raising its compliance standards.

He says: “We had conversations with those who wanted to leave and tried to persuade them to stay, but a number wanted to stay independent for various reasons, whether emotional or because of their client base.

“But a very large proportion of members decided to stay in the business, which we think is a fantastic result and a great vote of confidence in our proposition.

“Those who predicted that when we moved to a restricted model there would be a blood bath got it completely wrong.”

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