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Demand Growing for Smaller Advice Businesses

Interest is growing in smaller advice businesses that are being made available for sale, according to Knowledgemaster’s Jim Prigg.

KnowledgeMaster founder, Jim Prigg

Prigg, whose service proposition to the sector includes acting as an introduction agency for those interested in buying and selling advice businesses, has told Riskinfo there is a large and growing interest in smaller advice business books for sale under $250k of recurring income.

There are a number of factors, according to Prigg, which have contributed to this trend, including:

  • Many new advisers have realised they need to generate cash flow quickly. Rather than wait to build their business by organic growth they are considering acquiring immediate cash flow by acquisition
  • There are a whole range of planners exiting the larger financial institutions distribution firms – but, those that have decided to remain in the industry need to acquire books of business to sustain their lifestyle
  • Many senior advisers are considering selling off low-return client segments and concentrating on their higher fee paying clients in future
  • There is a trend of more mature-age advisers not wishing to comply with the proposed FASEA requirements, leading to their decision to liquidate their assets
  • Banks and lending institutions have tightened up on financing acquisitions, so those that can self fund at lower price levels are at a distinct advantage

These observations from the KnowledgeMaster founder follow additional comments by business broking firm, Radar Results (see: Advice Business Values in Decline), one of which concluded that a buyer’s market now exists for advice businesses. According to Prigg, good advice businesses still have excellent opportunities for the future. “It really is a good time to buy,” he said.

  • PS

    Being one of those ‘elderly’ advisers – 60ish, fit & healthy FASEA is not on my agenda, nor is selling my $250k client book for less than 2x recurring income. With tighter finance requirements for existing advisers and new advisers not having the capacity to borrow multiple 6 digit sums – I have come up with a very fair & equitable solution. An established AR places my client base under their AR business and I pay them an ‘accomodation’ fee and continue to ‘service’ the client book. Any and all ‘advice’ matters arising go to the AR as does the relevant client for no financial consideration. At the end of 3 years my remaining client base vests to the AR for a nominal consideration [e.g. $100]. This way I get to keep 3 year’s worth of income, the AR gets a $250k client base for $100 after 3 years and my ‘run-off’ PI covers the advice I gave up to the point of transfer to the AR. My Licensee sees no problems with it. So be damned if I’m shutting up shop ‘now’ and selling a business I’ve grown over decades for a grossly under-valued price.

    • Jim Prigg

      Good for you PS. Excellent model. As well you just may find that this current vicious treatment of good risk advisers will have abated when governments of both persuasions realise that risk has to be sold. Not “hidden and bundled” with other financial advice products or in super. Hang in there and enjoy the fruits of your labour. You deserve it. Jim