Percival joins pension transfer specialist

Percival joins pension transfer specialist

Rory Percival, a former technical director at the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), has joined the board of pension advice firm Pensionhelp.

The former ‘face of the FCA’ to advisers, turned consultant, is to bring a further layer of expertise to the Pensionhelp board that he will join as non-executive director.

Mr Percival worked at the regulator for 10 years and was involved with a number of high-profile projects such as risk profiling, centralised investment propositions, the Retail Distribution Review, research and due diligence, as well as speaking regularly at conferences.

Prior to joining the regulator Mr Percival worked in the advisory for sector for 20 years mainly in compliance and training roles, although he also obtained Chartered Financial Planner status.

Mr Percival left the FCA to launch his own consultancy business in November 2016.

By his own admission he had timed his exit with the conclusion of the regulator’s suitability report, which he worked on.

The Pensionhelp appointment marks Mr Percival's second post in the private sector since leaving the regulator. Last week adviser support services provider Simplybiz announced he will provide external governance and compliance oversight for the committee of its new investment advice service, Centra.

Mr Percival is also a member of the Personal Finance Society Board.

He said: “I am very happy that Pensionhelp invited me to join the board.  It is a comparatively young firm with an interesting proposition. I look forward to working with the firm in the coming months and years.”

Pensionhelp provides pension advice on personal pension transfers, retirement planning as well as final salary pension transfers, an area the FCA is very concerned about at this point.

The regulator is due to launch a wider study of pension transfer specialists in what marks its fourth review of the market.

Mr Percival hinted at a roadshow last week (28 February) it could be forced to take a harder line on pension transfer advice if problems persist.

This was unlikely to include further thematic work but could be more stringent, such as a formal pension review. Although he believed the regulator would want to avoid that.

Mark Wilson, managing director of Pensionhelp, said he was “delighted” to have secured Mr Percival on the board.

“He will bring significant knowledge and experience to the board. He is the ‘go to’ person in the sector we operate, and I am looking forward to his contribution in our strategic vision,” Mr Wilson said.

Neil Liversidge, managing director at West Riding Personal Financial Solutions, thought having the regulatory specialist on the board would prove quite useful in the current regulatory environment around pension transfers.

He said: "Mr Percival is an intelligent guy and given his background I would expect him to be an asset to a firm working in that field."