Blog Img

Financial Services Newsletter Friday 1st September 2023

Back to Blogs

Financial Services News

Ascot Lloyd has recorded a total group revenue of £80.6m for the year ending 31 December 2022, putting its success down to strong client growth. The national IFA completed six acquisitions in 2022 (over 35 since 2017) which took the number of core clients to nearly 24,000. It has completed three acquisitions this year, most recently Welsh financial advice firm Portfolio Financial Consultancy. Ascot Lloyd's group adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation stood at £20.8m, down from £23.1m in 2021. (Sahar Nazir, 21/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Ascot Lloyd records £80.6m revenue in 2022 aided by six acquisitions')

​Evelyn Partners has agreed terms to relocate its Bristol office next door to new premises at CEG's EQ development at 111 Victoria Street. The EQ building is Bristol's first new office development to target delivering Net Zero carbon in operation in accordance with the UKGBC framework. The new offices at the EQ building, in the heart of Bristol and just a few minutes' walk from Temple Meads train station, will provide working accommodation for the firm's 250-strong team based in the city and also allow space to continue with its ambitious regional growth strategy. (Mark Battersby, 21/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Evelyn Partners relocates Bristol office to landmark eco building')

​Advisers working for Tenet’s wealth and investment network as appointed representatives (AR) will be able to take a “fully supported transfer” to The Openwork Partnership following a deal struck between the two businesses. Tenet confirmed the decision was an outcome following the conclusion of its latest strategic review. It is expected that all moves will be completed within the next 12 months. "Communications with network members and colleagues are underway and will continue throughout the sale and transfer processes," the group stated.(Hope William-Smith, 21/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Tenet ARs to move to Openwork after review lays bare revenue issues')

​Benchmark has been on a path of innovation and growth that “sets it apart” from traditional financial planning firms, according to newly appointed Managing Director Tim Sargisson. Sargisson commended Benchmark's collaborative effort between Advisers and their clients to develop enhanced services and outcomes. "Advisers must ensure that good client outcomes are the core focus of their firm," he said. "Benchmark comes with significant oversight, governance, and risk management. Advisers must support client outcomes, and make sure their clients feel safe. By working with Benchmark, advisers know that we would not do something detrimental to their clients," Sargisson said. (Sahar Nazir, 16/8/2023, Professional Adviser, ''Innovative' Benchmark targets client-centred growth')

​Aegon UK has extended its partnership with Nationwide Building Society which will see its Advisers join Aegon’s online offering Investor Portfolio Service. The transfer is expected to be completed in early 2024, at which point the ongoing financial planning needs of about 90,000 customers will be transferred to Aegon UK. Nationwide said that 350 colleagues work on or directly support Aegon's investment business. The majority (215) are Financial Planning Managers but also provide development and support roles. Aegon's Investor Portfolio Service offers advice over the phone or via video to clients who invest a minimum of £20,000, or £400 per month. (Sahar Nazir, 10/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Aegon takes on 215 Nationwide advisers in partnership deal')

The number of Financial Advisers working for advice firms in the UK in 2022 was higher than in both 2021 and 2020, new Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) statistics show. The regulator's 2022 retail intermediary market data showed there were 28,227 Advisers working at financial advice firms in the UK last year. This is an increase on 27,839 Advisers in 2021 and 27,501 in 2020. (Hope William-Smith, 7/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Number of advisers in the UK rises for another consecutive year')

The Personal Finance Society (PFS) is recruiting two full members to serve as Directors on its board. In an advertisement on its website, the professional body said: “We are seeking applications from eligible individuals across a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences to ensure the board is representative of the broad skillset amongst our member base. Appointments are open to all PFS members who are DipPFS and above.” (Lois Vallely, 9/8/2023, Money Marketing, 'PFS hunts for two new member directors')

​A whistleblower raised concerns about discretionary fund manager (DFM) WealthTek to the FCA two years prior to the firm collapsing. Newcastle-based WealthTek was placed into special administration on 6th April, after the FCA filed an application to the High Court. Special administrators BDO later revealed there was an £81.4m client asset and money shortfall as well as a catalogue of compliance failings. On 31st May the FCA announced it had launched a criminal investigation into WealthTek and its owner John Dance, who is also a well-known racehorse owner. (Jack Gilbert, 30/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'WealthTek: Whistleblower went to FCA two years before DFM collapsed')

​Raymond James Investment Services has agreed to stick by FCA restrictions that prevent it from opening new branches or employing new Investment Managers without the consent of the regulator. The restrictions, which have been effective since 16 August, also state that the firm must not register any new trading names. When asked for a comment, Raymond James gave scant details on the rationale for the reprimand but gave the following statement: "As part of a recent thematic review and in consultation with the FCA, Raymond James Investment Services has agreed to a voluntary application for imposition of requirements (VREQ) and will not, without prior written consent from the FCA, employ or contract any new investment managers or onboard any new branches." (John Schaffer, Caroline Hug, 25/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Revealed: FCA restrictions stop Raymond James from opening new branches')

Quilter Cheviot has gained access to around 18,000 Non-Executive Directors and business owners through a new partnership. The wealth firm, in conjunction with its financial-planning arm Quilter Private Client Advisers, has partnered with The alliance will see Quilter Cheviot become the only wealth management partner to the platform and its 18,000-strong group of Non-Executive Directors and business owners. (Christopher Johnson, 17/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Quilter Cheviot gains access to 18,000 non-execs and entrepreneurs')

​RBC Brewin Dolphin has relocated its Birmingham team to new premises. The local team, which has been led by Menna Cule since 2019, will now operate out of the newly refurbished Chatwin Building on Colmore Row. The wealth management firm said it made the move as part of the company’s wider growth strategy. It also reiterated a particular commitment to Birmingham, where RBC Brewin Dolphin has maintained a presence for nearly 30 years. (Olivia Bybel, 16/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'RBC Brewin Dolphin moves Birmingham team to new office')

LEBC Group has entered administration as its sister firm Aspira Corporate Solutions has bought its client book. According to a statement from Aspira the transfer of assets has received approval from the Financial Conduct Authority. This followed what is described as an “extensive consultation” and has the “full support” of B.P. Marsh. (Michael Klimes, 9/8/2023, Money Marketing, 'LEBC Group enters administration as sister company takes over client book')

Mergers & Acquisitions

Loyal North has acquired advice firm Paul Wallis Financial Solutions (PWFS) to increase its presence in the South East. Kent-based PWFS has been in business for over 13 years and will join Loyal North's regional firm H&D Financial Planning. The deal is expected to bring Loyal North, which currently manages £1.5bn in client wealth, an additional £40m of client funds to its group. PWFS Principal Paul Wallis will join H&D as a Senior Financial Planner and will continue to deliver financial planning to his clients.(Isabel Baxter, 23/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Loyal North adds £40m in client funds with buy out of Kent advice firm')

​National Chartered wealth manager Progeny has acquired Nottingham-based wealth manager Fiscal Engineers in a deal that takes its assets under management to £8bn. The B-Corp certified firm said the purchase will help it bolster its Midlands presence. Fiscal Engineers, which was launched in 2000, also has offices in Birmingham and London and uses a Family Office approach to providing advice services. (Hope William-Smith, 7/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Progeny buys up rival wealth manager Fiscal Engineers')

​Nottingham-based George Square Financial Management has acquired IFA Taylor McGill Financial Services as it eyes further expansion. The deal means George Square will expand its client base with Taylor McGill's also Nottingham-headquartered portfolio of 250 private clients. The clients will now be able to access additional financial services provided by George Square, such as specialist lending and independent mortgage advice. George Square Founder Simon Taylor's son Daniel Taylor will join his father's firm as an IFA, bringing with him ten years' experience. (Sahar Nazir, 2/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'George Square acquires rival Nottingham adviser firm Taylor McGill')

​The merger of Rathbones and Investec Wealth & Investments has received the all-clear from the regulators and is now set to complete in September. The combination will create what the businesses have dubbed ‘the UK’s leading discretionary wealth manager’ with around £100bn of funds under management, and represents a major step forward in industry-wide consolidation. In market announcements, both businesses reported that all regulatory clearances connected with the all-share merger, which was announced in April, had been received. (Jeremy Gordon, 2/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Rathbones and Investec W&I get green light for September merger')

Evelyn Partners has continued its expansion into the North West of England, with a deal to bring the team of boutique wealth firm Millen Capital into the fold. Millen Capital was established in Liverpool in 1999 by Angus Millen, to provide a wealth management service to professionals and business owners. The team of five from Millen are set to join Evelyn’s Liverpool office as part of its succession planning scheme for business owners launched in 2021. The value of Millen Capital’s assets has not been disclosed. Joining Evelyn alongside Angus Millen are Financial Planner Gareth Lyttle, Chartered Wealth Manager Vicki Harper, and Administrators Linda O’Neill and Ruby Leigh. Richard Dawes, Head of Strategic Partnerships at Evelyn Partners, said that its clients will benefit from Evelyn’s investments in technology. (Christopher Johnson, 1/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Evelyn Partners inks deal for Liverpool wealth team')

In further news...Evelyn Partners, the wealth management group has announced it has completed the acquisition of Dart Capital, following regulatory approval. Dart Capital is a boutique wealth manager based in the City of London with £750m assets under management and a team of 19 people. It was established in 1987 and provides advice and discretionary investment management services for its clients. This includes the partners of accountancy and law firms, senior executives, business owners and retirees. (Darius McQuaid, 31/8/2023, Money Marketing, 'Evelyn Partners completes acquisition of Dart Capital')


The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has named a trio of freshly appointed Chairs to lead three of its panels. Clare Woodman will chair the FCA Markets Practitioner Panel, Matt Hammerstein will lead the regulator’s Practitioner Panel, and Mandy Gradden has been named Chair of the Listing Authority Advisory Panel. FCA Chair Ashley Alder said: "Clare, Matt, and Mandy bring with them a deep wealth of experience and knowledge at a changing and challenging time for the economy and for consumers. They will play a vital role in providing insight and challenge on behalf of the firms, markets and consumers we serve by ensuring that all voices are heard.” (Jenna Brown, 1/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'People Moves: Three take up panel chair roles at FCA')

​Schroders Personal Wealth (SPW) has hired industry veteran Alan Goodman as its Chief Investment Officer. Goodman has nearly 30 years financial services experience and has previously held investment positions at St James’s Place, BNY Mellon and Invesco. He was most recently the Private Markets and Alternatives Director at St James’s Place. (Sahar Nazir, 1/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Schroders Personal Wealth appoints CIO')

​Calton Wealth Management has appointed a Financial Planner as the newly founded business looks to expand. Elliot Guthrie has joined the Edinburgh-based firm and has more than seven years experience in financial services. He began his career in Linlithgow-based financial advisory firm Policy Services as an Administrator dealing with servicing products for clients of St James’s Place. Most recently, he was the Financial Planning Consultant at Boston-based financial planning platform Origin. (Sahar Nazir, 2/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Calton Wealth Management names new financial planner')

Aviva Investors, the global asset management business of Aviva, has appointed Smera Ashraf as UK Head of Global Wealth. She has joined Aviva Investors from HSBC Asset Management where she was Global Commercial Sustainability Manager, focused on sustainable propositions for clients. Prior to this, Ashraf led the UK retail distribution teams for three years. (Isabel Baxter, 2/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Aviva Investors names UK global wealth head')

​Mirabaud Wealth Management has appointed two new Executives – a Managing Director (MD) and an Associate Director. Chartered Wealth Manager and former UBS employee Joe Knight will take on the role of MD and brings more than 20 years’ experience to the London-based wealth manager, including time at both Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse. New Associate Director Liam Jones also joins Mirabaud from UBS, where he advised entrepreneurs and executives. He previously worked at both Smith and Williamson Investment Management and Asset Risk Consultants. (Hope William-Smith, 7/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Managing director and associate director appointed at Mirabaud Wealth Management')

​Fintel has appointed Keith Hare as a Consultant to help enhance its financial planning capabilities. Hare will be responsible for developing Plannr’s specialist CRM capability for financial advisers in the newly-created role. He played a key role in facilitating Fintel Lab’s recent investment in Plannr Technologies. Moreover, he will provide insights into Fintel's integrated technology strategy. Hare has previously held a number of senior and non-executive director roles at technology and investment firms, including Benchmark Capital, Time4Advice, and Redbourne Wealth Management.(Sahar Nazir, 9/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Fintel hires Keith Hare to help strengthen financial planning capabilities')

The Consumer Duty Alliance has appointed Michael Lawrence as the Chair of its new Consumer Duty Champions' Forum - the first meeting of which will take place in September. The not-for-profit said the forum aims to help ‘Consumer Duty champions' benchmark through early experience and the sharing of good practice, and will facilitate "meaningful discussions that will benefit firms and their clients across the sector". Lawrence is Principal Consultant at Bovill, a business management consultant business, and he previously spent 16 years with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), most recently as a Technical Specialist in consumer investments supervision. (Hope William-Smith, 9/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Consumer Duty Alliance appoints ex-FCA specialist to chair forum')

​Charles Stanley has reached an agreement with Brown Shipley to add its Court of Protection team to its own, adding three additional staff members. Charles Stanley said the agreement would add scale to its of Court of Protection operation and support future growth. It added Brown Shipley’s decision was part of its increased focus on its core private banking business. It confirmed Richard McGregor, Robert Farnworth and Holly Bellerby – latterly all of Brown Shipley - would transition to Charles Stanley’s seven-strong Court of Protection team at the end of October. McGregor and Farnworth join as Director of Private Clients and Court of Protection, and Bellerby as Investment Managers’ Assistant. (Jenna Brown, 10/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Charles Stanley adds three to Court of Protection business')

​Close Brothers Asset Management (CBAM) has appointed a Senior Financial Planner Paul Smith to lead the firm’s Manchester office. Smith has over 20 years’ experience in investments and financial planning. He has advised professionals in the legal sector and specialises in tax efficiency and cash extraction from inception. Most recently, he was a Director at Brown Shipley & Co, where he advised high-net-worth individuals and ultra-high-net-worth individuals. His past experience also involves private banks, including Coutts & Co and accountancy firms including Mazars. (Sahar Nazir, 10/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Chartered financial planner Paul Smith joins Close Brothers Asset Management')

​Amit Mehta has rejoined Nightingales Wealth Management as joint Director. Mehta started his career in financial services at Nightingales in 2015. He worked at the firm from 2015 to 2019, beginning as a Mortgage Administrator before becoming a High-Net-Worth Protection and Mortgage Adviser. Since then, he has worked at Addidi Wealth and Progeny Wealth and became a Level 6 Chartered Financial Planner in 2021. When Mehta initially joined Addidi Wealth, the firm specialised in advising women under former head Anna Sofat. Addidi Wealth then merged with Progeny, where Mehta worked as a Financial Planner for high-net-worth individuals until 2023. During this time, Mehta stayed in touch with Nightingales Wealth Management’s Founder Sam Farmer and when a directorship opened at the firm, Farmer saw Mehta as the “perfect fit” for the firm’s wealth management arm. (Isabel Baxter, 11/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Adviser rejoins Nightingales WM as joint director')

​St. James’s Place (SJP) has appointed Hetal Mehta as Head of Economic Research to work closely with its investment team. She has more than 17 years of experience in economics working across the private and public sector. Most recently, Mehta worked as a Senior European Economist at Legal & General Investment Management where she was responsible for UK, Eurozone, Scandi economic and central bank views and analysis. (Isabel Baxter, 17/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'St James’s Place appoints head of economic research')

Ascot Lloyd has appointed Christian Burgess as Chief Financial & Operations Officer and Peter Blanc as Non-Executive Director (NED). Burgess has joined from Cabot Credit Management where he was the Chief Financial Officer. Meanwhile, Blanc, Head of Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) at Howden Group Holdings, has joined as NED to manage Ascot Lloyd’s M&A function. He was NED at Hastings Insurance Services, and is a past President of the Chartered Insurance Institute. (Isabel Baxter, 22/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Ascot Lloyd makes two board appointments')

Financial services technology provider iPipeline has hired Jon Finley as Business Development Director to work with platforms and advisers. Finley has more than 31 years’ experience and has joined from Dunstan Thomas where he oversaw business development for pensions and platforms. He was also previously an IFA, Mortgage Broker and Bancassurer. (Isabel Baxter, 23/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Fintech hires BD director to work with advisers')

Redington has promoted Oliver Wayne to Head of Manager Research after seven years at the company. Wayne joined Redington's manager research team as a Vice President (VP) in 2016 after five years at Willis Towers Watson. In 2019, he was promoted to Senior VP, followed by a role as Director from 2022. The group said he had "played an instrumental role in developing Redington's public equity research offering". Wayne has replaced Nick Samuels, who left Redington earlier this year. His appointment follows a host of senior promotions within the firm's LGPS, people, global assets and sustainable investment teams. (Sahar Nazir, 24/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Redington hires manager research lead to help 'cut through noise'')

In further news...Redington has appointed Gavin Howard as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Executive Director. Howard has over 30 years’ experience in financial services and has been CFO at IFG Group and Nucleus Financial. He has also held senior executive positions at Partnership Assurance and Octopus Lifestyle. (Isabel Baxter, 30/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Redington appoints chief financial officer and executive director')

Independent advisory consultancy Barnett Waddingham (BW) has appointed Neil Howitt as Head of Self-Invested Personal Pensions (SIPP) Finance. Howitt has been in financial services for 35 years. He has previously been Chief Financial Officer at Nucleus and spent 21 years at St James’s Place. (Isabel Baxter, 29/8/2023, Professional Adviser, 'Barnett Waddingham hires SIPP finance director to grow business')

A trio of former First Wealth Financial Planners have decided to set up their own advice firm – Finova Money – which will focus on serving the next generation of clients. Co-Founders Scott Millar, Rob Schwarz and Rob Bell said the business is due to launch next week and will be part of the Sense Network. The three Co-Founders met while working together at First Wealth and had been talking about branching out on their own for the past couple of years. Schwartz started working for First Wealth in 2017, while Millar and Bell joined in 2018. All three left the business in May 2023 to set up Finova Money. (Lois Vallely, 24/8/2023, Money Marketing, 'Former First Wealth planners launch next-gen advice firm')

Nutmeg boss Sanjiv Somani has resigned from the business and its parent company JP Morgan Europe. Somani was JP Morgan Chase's Managing Director and took responsibility for Nutmeg in June 2022 after Neil Ross Alexander left. It is understood Sanoke Viswanathan is, who runs JP Morgan’s international consumer banking division, will take control of the digital wealth manager. (Michael Klimes, 10/8/2023, Money Marketing, 'Nutmeg boss leaves after a year')

FE fundinfo, the investment fund data and technology company, has appointed Liam Healy as its Chief Executive, effective 4 September 2023. Healy has more than 15 years’ of executive leadership experience, focused on delivering customer value through go-to-market strategy, product delivery and mergers and acquisitions. According to FE fundinfo he has a record of leading successful software as a service (SaaS) businesses, alongside broad international experience across Europe, Asia, and the US. (Michael Klimes, 7/8/2023, Money Marketing, 'FE fundinfo appoints Liam Healy as CEO')

​Former Prudential interim CEO Mark FitzPatrick is the leading contender for the top job at St James’s Place (SJP). FitzPatrick is the preferred choice of the SJP board to replace the incumbent CEO Andrew Croft. Prior to Prudential, FitzPatrick spent 26 years at Deloitte, where he was most recently Managing Partner for clients and markets. (Jack Gilbert, 31/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Ex-Prudential CEO lined up for SJP top job')

Investec Wealth & Investments has hired Tamara Marten as Head of Corporate Executives and Professionals. Marten joins the firm’s private office, following a year at Citi Global Wealth at Work as Head of EMEA investments. Marten has 15 years of industry experience, having started her career in 2008 as a Graduate FX Analyst at Lehman Brothers. She later went on to work as a Graduate Analyst at Barclays, where she provided clients from Russia and Eastern Europe with private bank services. She has also worked as a Private Banker covering family offices at Barclays. (Caroline Hug, 31/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Investec W&I poaches Citi investments boss for professionals role')

​Weatherbys Private Bank has appointed PwC’s Mark Batten to a board role at the firm. Batten will act as a Non-Executive Director and Senior Independent Director with immediate effect. He has spent more than three decades within financial services, having been a Partner at PwC for more than 25 years before retiring from the position in 2017. (Christopher Johnson, 25/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Weatherbys Private Bank hires PwC vet to board')

​Rathbones has hired RBC Brewin Dolphin Divisional Director David Moore. Moore joins the firm’s Glasgow office as Investment Director, following more than 13 years at RBC Brewin Dolphin. Moore has more than 25 years of experience in the industry, having started his career at Barclays Wealth in 1997. He worked there for more than 12 years, eventually becoming a Portfolio Manager. (Caroline Hug, 16/8/2023, Citywire Wealth Manager, 'Rathbones poaches RBC Brewin director for Glasgow office')

For an informal chat on how IDEX Consulting can support your business needs and professional career goals, please contact Tony Bates, Managing Director on 07534 507 007 or

All information provided in this Market Digest has been gathered from Money Marketing, Financial Planning Today, Citywire Wealth Manager and Professional Adviser.