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By Holly Black | Published Feb 17, 2012

AWD Chase de Vere ‘poaching’ advisers

Exclusive: AWD Chase de Vere is planning to increase its number of advisers from 215 to 250 this year, a rise of almost 17%.

AWD said that it is responding to a rising demand from advisers who want to be part of a larger firm that is well placed for RDR and the company is also looking at the potential for a number of acquisitions.

It has been approached by a number of sole traders and partnerships that are planning to leave the industry after this year and are keen to pass on their customer banks. This increasing client bank will in turn attract new advisers, said chief executive Stephen Kavanagh.

Those passing on customer banks are paid a retainer while clients are transferred one by one with both old and new advisers present for the handover meeting. Exiting advisers are then also paid a fee based on the number and the value of their clients.

Kavanagh said the fact that the firm has “done a lot of the grunt work already” on RDR is also appealing to advisers.

Having spent a number of months implementing new systems and processes, including back office, training and IT infrastructure changes, Kavanagh says that a recruitment drive is now much more manageable.

He added, “We are in a position to be much more scalable now and we want to poach, in the most compliant way possible, advisers from elsewhere.”

The firm will be running recruitment sessions in conjunction with agencies throughout the year.

Chase de Vere is not alone in its belief that 2012 will be a good year to expand, with Perspective Financial Group having posted its first acquisition of the year back in January.

Group mergers and acquisitions manager David Hesketh said that RDR is a main driver in the ability to buy up client banks and believes that there will be a number of consolidations in the industry over the coming years.

“People are joining bigger groups for access to support functions and better rates from providers,” he said.

holly.black@ft.com

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