On the day Professional Investment Services entered into a nine-month monitoring of its advice processes, its parent company, Centrepoint Alliance, revealed a “new group executive team” without providing any details about its membership.
Yesterday, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) issued a statement indicating an independent expert would be appointed to PIS to monitor its “ability to identify poor advice and the effectiveness of its advice audit and pre-vet functions” for a nine-month period.The regulator also said it still had “concerns that [PIS’s] compliance and audit functions required further work” despite an enforceable undertaking entered into by the company ending in March 2012.Following the revelation of the additional monitoring, a statement from PIS parent company Centrepoint Alliance (CAF) alluded to “good progress” made by the company since the EU and announced the appointment of a “new group executive team”. The statement said that the “new structure enables CAF to leverage the strengths across [its] businesses” but did not provide any information about the composition of the new team or any substantive changes to the company’s leadership.A CAF spokesperson confirmed changes at the group but was unable to provide further information on the changes before ifa went to press.In a separate statement, the group confirmed that an “independent expert” has been appointed to monitor its advice process, but declined to name the appointee.However, in a third statement, made to the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), it was revealed that PricewatehouseCoopers had been appointed to the task.PwC declined to comment. CAF reported a loss before tax and non-controlling interests of $14.5 million in June 2012, largely due to the payment of claims to clients of PIS and the costs of responding to the ASIC enforceable undertaking.More than $11 million was paid out in claims settlement during the 2012 financial year, and close to $17 million was provisioned against future claims in June 2012.
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