Profile: David Finan tells why he joined SOLLA and serves ex-pats
With over 30 years of experience in financial advice, David Finan, managing director of Jardine Finan, talks to Adviser Business Review about building his firm, being a member of the Society of Later Life Advisers (SOLLA) and the firm’s decision to expand the business into expatriate advice
Adviser Business Review: What is the business ethos of Jardine Finan?
David Finan: I set out to create a firm that offered a bespoke service to clients. I’ve been an adviser for over 30 years, and I’m passionate about offering the best possible service. Our average client is a lump sum investment client, either in pre or post retirement stage. As such, they tend to be 50s plus, and our oldest client is 90. We adopted the approach that we would not exclude anybody and we would seek to offer everyone the same level of service. What we look for are individuals who are serious about putting in place a solid financial plan and can really benefit from advice.
ABR: Would you like to attract a younger client base?
DF: There is of course a valid argument that younger clients are important for the longevity of a business, but the fact remains that the number of younger clients with large sums to invest is far fewer. Clearly young people, especially if they are married and / or with children, have financial planning and protection needs but it’s a matter of how high on their priority list seeking advice really is.
ABR: How have you built your client base over the years?
DF: We work closely with a number of law firms, who are fantastic in referring clients to us. They tend to be in the 50s plus age group, often with inheritance needs. We are also registered on Vouchedfor, which has been very useful in securing new business.
I am a chartered financial planner, have been awarded a fellowship to the Personal Finance Society and am also as a member of the Society of Later Life Advisers, so prospective clients have often done their homework and know they’re coming to someone they can really trust.
ABR: What led you to specialise in long term care?
DF: The demographic we deal with as a firm led us to believe it would be an area we should really understand and be able to offer our clients. Very few people are aware of the range of options available to them, and it’s our job to ensure they find the right solution for their circumstances. There aren’t many advisers who are fully qualified to provide advice on this area, so it’s useful for us as a business to have this specialism. As a member of the Society of Later Life Advisers (SOLLA), clients seeking advice in this area are likely to research online and look for a qualified, trusted adviser who will understand their needs.
ABR: You offer expatriate advice, how important is this area of the market to you?
DF: Our decision to offer expat advice came about because of family members who moved to Southern Spain, where there is a large expat community. It became abundantly clear that if these people had not received advice in the UK prior to leaving, they would struggle to find it abroad. We have passporting rights across Europe and we work with clients to make them aware of the many products which could be more suitable for their circumstances than if they were based in the UK. We are of course interested in working with younger clients looking to work abroad for tax purposes, but the bulk of the work we do within the expat advice market is with the retired population.
ABR: What opportunities do you see in the market for a firm like Jardine Finan?
DF: We are obviously an ageing population and I really believe people need to give extra thought to their retirement, especially in times of volatile markets. There are certainly enough clients to go round, but there is still huge potential there for those who are not taking advice but could very much benefit from it. In my opinion, we need to do more to highlight the benefits of taking advice.
ABR: What does the future hold for Jardine Finan?
DF: If we continue as we are, there won’t be much scope to take on more clients. I very much enjoy working with the pre and post retirement market and I’m quite happy to continue doing so. Bringing on another adviser is always under review, but not something that is in the pipeline at the moment.
Visit the Jardine Finan website