Openwork looks to Quilter for senior advice role

Openwork looks to Quilter for senior advice role

Adviser network Openwork has continued its expansion with two new appointments, filling senior roles with managers from Quilter and Blackrock.

The network has appointed Abbie Gibson to the role of head of wealth advice and sales processes in which, according to Openwork, she will focus on enhancing the team’s operations in a bid to increase productivity and add value to adviser businesses.

She was previously head of the wealth relationship management team at Quilter, which recently completed its acquisition of national advice company and network Lighthouse in a deal worth £46.2m.

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Alison Bruford has joined as head of channel marketing and will be responsible for developing the wealth arm’s marketing strategy.

She joins from Blackrock where she was European vice president of product marketing having previously worked for Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, Invesco Perpetual and Pictet Asset Management.

The moves come as Mike Gummerson, the manager of Openwork’s business transition and practice productivity teams and wealth development manager, decided to retire at the end of the year.

Mike Morrow, wealth and platform director, said: “We are moving forward and enhancing our capabilities and support to our advisers after carefully considering the changes. 

“The two new appointments bring fresh ideas and innovation to our wealth team and their combined experience and diverse skill sets will be an asset to the advisers across our network.”

He added Mr Gummerson had been an asset to the business and was highly regarded by advisers and his colleagues.

Ms Gibson said she was delighted to be joining Openwork after being “enormously impressed” by its vision and the direction of the business.

She said: “We are all engaged in building an exciting future for the network and I look forward to working with colleagues up and down the country.”

Ms Bruford added: “I am looking forward to working closely with advisers across the country and supporting them so that they can continue to thrive and grow in this exciting and challenging market.”

The appointments are the latest in a string of new hires as the network looks to recruit an additional 250 wealth advisers to its restricted business over the next three years.

Just last month, Openwork reported it was on track to have the best six months for recruitment in a decade and forecasted 40 new adviser appointments for June alone.

Earlier this year, the network hired Claire Limon as head of recruitment and development and Carrie Morris as chief people officer as part of its expansion plans.

Openwork Limited has more than 3,900 financial advisers operating across the UK.

Quilter’s acquisition of Lighthouse brought its adviser numbers up to a similar figure, the same as St James’s Place.

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