InvestmentsSep 29 2020

Newcastle IFA launches adviser academy

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Newcastle IFA launches adviser academy
ByDavid Thorpe

Newcastle based advice firm Lowes Financial Management has launched an adviser academy to provide training for future advisers who will work for both Lowes and other firms.

Ian Lowes, managing director of Lowes Financial Management, told FTAdviser it had been a long term ambition for the company to start a training scheme but until last year it had been "just something on a hopeful horizon". 

With Lowes now approaching its fiftieth anniversary, "the timing couldn’t be better, notwithstanding the pandemic, which has had a bit of  an impact but one which we have worked around", he said.

Lowes Financial Academy will offer CII Level 3 and 4 qualifications and conduct its courses online for the “foreseeable future".

The training will come at a cost of £470 for Level 3 and £650 per Level 4 module.

Mr Lowes said the ability and necessity to launch remotely, brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, had reduced the amount of time required to get an academy up and running and in turn had allowed for an early launch.

He said the expectation was that the academy would serve as a recruitment programme for his own firm. However, there were “non solicitation” agreements in place forbidding Lowes from approaching any of the academy students who are employees of other firms.

Mr Lowes said: “The ambitions for an academy were re-ignited when we were introduced to two maths teachers, Shannon Fox and Helen Grieves, who had a shared vision. 

"We helped them with their own CII training and once they attained QCF Level 4, with exceptional marks, we set the wheels in motion to move onto the next stage of preparing to launch the academy, whilst Shannon and Helen concentrated on their Level 6 qualifications.” 

He added: "Whilst as with any aspect of business it is ultimately intended to be a profitable venture, if nothing else, the academy provides us with an opportunity to help more people consider a career in financial services by providing them with a route to achieving the necessary qualifications.”

Lowes Financial Management is 50 years old next year. In April, the company launched its own discretionary fund management (DFM) product.