2nd place: Transparency points way forward for Brewin

According to Charlotte Black, Brewin Dolphin embraced the transparent charging structures of RDR and it is in a strong position to take advantage of this new, more efficient environment.

The national investment management and financial planning firm, which reclaimed second place in this year’s standings, with gross sales of £1.7bn has succeeded in removing trail commission from the majority of its business, despite one or two teething issues.

Ms Black said: “Brewin Dolphin embraces the principles of RDR, including fully-qualified investment managers and transparent charging structures. New investments in collectives are invested in non-trail-paying units, or super clean units as they are becoming known, although this may not always follow for transfers in specie.

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“The transition of our existing book to non-trail paying units is broadly complete, although some legacy business is taking longer than we originally hoped.”

Despite RDR stipulations forcing Brewin Dolphin to advertise its services as ‘restricted’, Ms Black was keen to point out that most of its rival competitors did not have the same level of resources.

She said: “Many firms governed by RDR may not offer the range of investments and the depth of research and experience that we have always given and will continue to offer our clients.”

Brewin Dolphin is particularly proud of its research department, which reviews investments across the market and makes objective recommendations within each category.

This department consists of seven qualified equity research analysts, as well as 12 analysts across fixed income, closed-end funds, structured products, open-ended funds, portfolio strategy and quantitative.