InvestmentsJun 27 2019

Harwood Wealth boss explains which advice firms he buys

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Harwood Wealth boss explains which advice firms he buys
ByDavid Thorpe

Harwood Wealth agreed the acquisition of seven advice firms in the six months to 30 April, and has a £7m pot for further acquisitions this year.

The company’s chief executive Alan Durrant said buying advice firms was one of the “three pillars” of development for the business, alongside organic growth and greater efficiency.

Mr Durrant said: “What we are looking for in the advice firms we acquire is recurring revenue, that’s very important to us, it gives us a predictability.”

He said: “We have completed five acquisitions and exchanged on a further two this year so far, to a value of £4.3m, which was considerably ahead of where we were in the whole of 2017, when we spent £2.3m on acquisitions.”

At the start of May, the firm agreed a £7m banking facility to fund further deals. 

The firm had assets under management and influence of £5.3bn at the end of April 2019, an increase of £1.2bn on the same period in 2018. 

Mr Durrant said: “The regulatory and other issues have increased the pressure on advisers, so they are happy to outsource, and we see it as an area of growth for us.”   

He acknowledged that margin pressures are being felt across the advice and discretionary fund management market, but added that “the industry as a whole” needs to be ready for lower margins in the years to come. 

Mr Durrant said: “That annual charge as a percentage of assets that firms across the industry can charge will come down a bit, thats why being more efficient is important.”