Alan Lakey, partner at Highclere Financial Services, has joined the council of the Association of Independent Financial Advisers as he feels the trade body has joined his way of thinking about the incoming Retail Distribution Review.
Mr Lakey, often an outspoken critic of the trade body who was last night (13 November) elected to the council at its annual dinner, believes that Aifa is now “fully aware” of the negative impact of the RDR and that it can now work in tandem with his group Adviser Alliance, which was essentially set up to fight the incoming rule changes.
He said: “I don’t think Aifa thinks the RDR is a good thing anymore, from talking to council members.
“Adviser Alliance was set up to fight the RDR but there was no backing from Aifa nor the Association of British Insurers. We started legal actions and with our limited resources we did well, but I don’t think Adviser Alliance should just stand adrift and continue from an isolated position.”
Mr Lakey highlighted that things have changed now as when the RDR was first mooted in 2006, the support that Aifa gave the industry was “poor”.
He said: “Me and others said that it wasn’t to work, as it was destructive and anti-consumer. Aifa are as much to blame as the ABI for letting it stream through.
“I would like to think my perception of reality is something that I can introduce to Aifa, but how that can be depends on many factors. If I couldn’t do this, then I wouldn’t even bother.”
Last night, at Aifa’s annual dinner, Lord Deben, Aifa’s chairman, declared the dinner as the first event where Aifa was the Association of Professional Financial Advisers, after members voted through its proposals to rebrand and accept restricted advisers.