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Attivo on deal spree despite redundancies

Attivo on deal spree despite redundancies

Advice consolidator Attivo made a number of support staff redundant earlier this year but is on track to complete several deals in the coming months. 

The Cheltenham-headquartered business told FTAdviser 14 staff had left the company throughout July and August as a result of redundancy, eight compulsory and six voluntary.

Attivo said the redundancies were the result of a technology review, including a change of back-office systems in January, which it said had enhanced the service provided to clients.

Sources close to the situation told FTAdviser of concerns that the reduction in support staff had increased the workload for financial planners at the firm. 

Stephen Harper, chief executive at Attivo, said the company's technology overhaul meant staff were now working "much more efficiently and effectively". 

Mr Harper said: "We pretty much will be finishing all our financial planning reviews for our clients a month early. 

"They have just been working with a much higher contact strategy with all our clients, which has been paying dividends.

"Our resource model when we had the other two businesses was four support staff to one fee-earning financial planner.

"We now operate at below 1.5 support staff for one financial planner because of all the technology efficiencies and automation. We have cut out enormous cost in the business and improved efficiency."

In April FTAdviser reported Attivo had paused six deals and deferred more than £80m in acquisition funding as a result of the coronavirus lockdown. 

The advice firm closed its three offices during the first wave of the crisis and placed 36 employees on furlough until the end of the lockdown, which Attivo said at the time would avoid redundancies.

Mr Harper told FTAdviser the company's acquisition plans were now back on track, with deals lined up before Christmas and more scheduled next year. 

Stuart Harding, financial planning director at Attivo, said: "We made every attempt to redeploy where possible to other areas of the business." 

rachel.mortimer@ft.com

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