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Severn bridges gap to take Aifa top job

Aifa has picked the architect of depolarisation, FSA head of retail investment policy David Severn, as its new director general.

The election by Aifa’s appointment committee, made up of four adviser
members of Aifa’s council, was unanimous. Severn will start on
February 1, with director of policy Fay Goddard taking the role in
the interim. When Severn joins, Goddard will extend her role to
include mortgage advice while Association of Mortgage Intermediaries
director Chris Cummings will become Aifa deputy director general.

Goddard says: “I look forward to working with David – I have got to
know him over the last five years and I think that he will be a great
asset.”

IFAs were barred from applying for the post and some say they are
surprised at the appointment but feel that Severn should be given a
chance.

Syndaxi Financial Planning director Robert Reid says: “I was
surprised but I can understand the perverse logic that says the man
who created the depolarisation rules may be the best to take them
forward. Whether it works, we will see.”

Informed Choice managing director Nick Bamford says: “It is a shame
we could not have had an IFA but I suppose this is the nature of the
beast – they want people who are politically able rather than those
who know how an IFA works.”

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