MPA Exclusive: aggregators tell all

MPA managed to get the heads of Australia’s leading aggregators in one room, where they told us their main concerns for the industry.
Brokers are at risk of being subsumed into the financial planning industry, warn the leaders of Australia’s main aggregators. The prediction was made at a roundtable, organised by MPA, where aggregators confronted each over both over their approach to aggregation, and themes affecting the entire industry.  The participants were Phil Quin-Conroy of PLAN Australia, Malcolm Watkins of AFG, Brendan Wright of FAST, Tanya Sale of Outsource Financial, Murray Lees of Connective , Tim Brown of Vow Financial and Stephen Moore of Choice.

Financial planners were looking to include brokers as part of their business, it was suggested, in order to service existing clients. As Connective boss Lees explained: “What is really interesting is that of the people who have got industry experience, the planners and the accountants are looking to effectively buy a broker a lot of the time - they are not very often looking to become a broker themselves. I think it is something we should all be careful of in the industry; that we don’t end up becoming a subset of financial planning because that is a possible trend that could occur.”

Another concern raised was that further consolidation in the industry – particularly bank ownership – risked creating conflicts of interest, particularly bank white label distribution. Other issues discussed ranged from training to technology and CRM.

You can read the full Aggregator Roundtable in MPA 14.9, hitting desks next week, and videos will also be available on the MPA website. And if you haven’t taken MPA’s poll on turning away clients, please do so now – it closes on Monday!