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Adviser focus pays off for life companies

TAL has taken out the platinum award in the Plan for Life/Association of Financial Advisers Life Company of the Year awards for the second year in a row, listing its focus on advisers at the key factor in its success.

“Advisers and our clients are our main focus at TAL and it seems to be a strategy that is working,” said a TAL spokesperson. “Our products liberate advisers to focus on their clients’ more aspirational outcomes since the basic retirement needs are taken care of.”

TAL also picked up the term/TPD product award and was a finalist in the ‘income protection’ product and ‘service quality’ categories.

In accepting the award for business services/BDM team of the year, AIA business development manager Melanie Brett said a central focus on advisers was important.

“Our central focus is how we can help advisers grow their businesses,” she said.

Challenger – which had a clean sweep in the annuity categories, taking out the awards for oiverall annuity provider, long term income stream and annuity & income stream innovation – recently spoke to ifa about the role of advisers in retirement planning.

“Financial advisers play a really important role for retirees generally,” Challenger managing director and chief executive Brian Benari said.

“The message and value-add that advisers can bring is really material in respect to retirement planning,” he said.

Speaking at the award ceremony in Sydney yesterday, AFA CEO Brad Fox said the awards were testament to the quality of Australia’s life product industry and that advisers can trust their product providers.

“We can confirm with confidence that Australian life companies are indeed committed to delivering excellent service and product solutions for Australians,” he said.

Other award recipients include OnePath (trauma, claims team of the year); CommInsure (income protection, investment bond results); MLC (risk product innovation); Asteron (service quality, underwriting).