Centrepoint turns down 2/3 advisers

Centrepoint Alliance is rejecting the majority of applications to join its licensees as the pool of advisers “shopping around” is on the rise, says managing director John de Zwart.

Speaking to ifa, Mr de Zwart said his organisation is detecting a growing number of unlicensed advisers as it assesses applications for its Professional Investment Services and Alliance Wealth dealer groups.

“I think people are trying to modernise and professionalise. But the impact of that is that poor quality advisers have been kicked out and there is a large group of them shopping around at the moment,” Mr de Zwart said.

“We won’t take them. There are smaller licensees that have taken on the risk and then faced ASIC. We’re not taking the risk, we probably say no to two out of every three approaches.”

He said there are a number of things to be on the lookout for when conducting due diligence including whether they have built a successful practice, their risk profiling approach and, most importantly, their cultural alignment with your own groups.

At the same time, the former TAL and AMP executive said the industry as a whole is upping its game, with a noticeable lift in adviser standards.

“While I would love to be able to bash my peers, I think the whole industry is on an upward trajectory and is starting to reap the benefit of recent hard work,” he said.

“We might have started a little earlier, but what I see is anybody of any significance is heading in a positive direction.

“Not long ago a lot of [dealer groups] were really holding onto the 80s and 90s models. You don’t see that anymore.”

Centrepoint experienced strong financial results in the six months to 31 December 2014 largely off the back of increasing adviser take-up of its “services and solutions” including its PI insurance offer, he added.

John de Zwart will be a panellist at the upcoming ifa Business Strategy Day discussing the ‘future of licensing’. For more information please visit http://www.businessstrategyday.com.au/

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