BT Financial Group has denied allegations that it matched AMP’s lucrative incentive offer to Genesys member firms, as more than 20 new advisers join the Magnitude licence.
Yesterday, ifa revealed that a number of the largest Genesys Wealth Advisers practices have formally joined the Magnitude AFSL within Westpac’s BT Select network following AMP’s decision to close its former licensee.
Speaking to ifa, BT general manager, group licensees, Phil Butterworth said the mass recruitment comes off the back of strong growth figures over the past three years, with BT Select now encompassing 220 advisers across 70 practices.
“We are very pleased to have this calibre of advisers and practices joining BT Select,” Mr Butterworth said. “BT Select continues to attract like-minded practices that are looking to grow while having access to the resources of an organisation such as BT Financial Group.”
Reflecting on the news, a number of separate sources with intimate knowledge of the matter told ifa that the practices were incentivised via lucrative sign-on payments “mirroring AMP’s lucrative offer” – of three times margin, as previously revealed by ifa – with one firm allegedly receiving a payment upwards of $1 million.
The alleged payments allowed the former member firms to extricate themselves from equity stakes held by AMP under the ‘Genesys Gem’ model implemented in a majority of Genesys practices.
However, BT has vehemently denied the allegations, with a spokesperson telling ifa the figures quoted are “simply untrue” and “nowhere near that size”.
Asked whether smaller sign-on payments were offered, the spokesperson said the “commercial arrangements” in place with the new Magnitude practices could not be discussed further.
ifa understands that at least some of the practices are long-time users of the Solar BT white-label platform, with one incoming recruit saying use of the platform was a “sticking point” in disputes with previous parent company AMP.
Another former Genesys adviser listed “open architecture” and “strong compliance culture” as the factors leading to his decision to join BT, but would not be drawn on whether a ‘sign-on’ deal was negotiated.
The spokesperson said dealer groups under the BT banner have broad approved product lists.
Last week, AMP CEO Craig Meller said he was “not at all concerned” by the movement of Genesys advisers to other financial planning networks and that its decision to close the group was “purely financial”.
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