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IFA conference planning criticised

The Institute of Financial Advisers has “killed two birds with one stone” with its decision to switch the time and location of its annual conference, IFA president Nigel Tate says.

Thursday, January 24th 2013, 9:39AM 4 Comments

by Niko Kloeten

The IFA conference, which was scheduled to take place in Nelson in July, has been moved to Auckland and will now run in May, directly after the two-day PortfolioConstruction Forum Symposium.

Heathcote Investment Partners director Clayton Copplestone, who offered to fit the Perfecting Investment Portfolios event in with the IFA conference, said the change of time and place suggested the IFA had got “one or both” of those things wrong.

“To have an event like that in a regional area puts additional pressure on delegates in the first place.  I don’t think any of the professional bodies have the luxury of picking a regional venue for a national conference,” he said.

IFA president Nigel Tate said the institute began investigating the switch in August last year when preparations for the original event in Nelson were in their infancy.

He said the PortfolioConstruction Forum was at a higher level than what was available in New Zealand and working with it “killed two birds with one stone” by uncluttering the conference schedule.

“We looked at the diary of conferences and they were chocking up; we had the PortfolioConstruction Forum, Perfecting Investment Portfolios, the IFA, the PAA… all those organisations running conferences is just going to clog up too much and we’re all going to suffer.”

A source who has presented at IFA events said the IFA risked diluting its brand by running the conference in collaboration with another provider.

“There’s a chance people will go to the PortfolioConstruction Forum event and then leave after that.”

But Tate said the situation was no different to last year’s conference when the IFA collaborated with the NZX.

“There will be people who go to the Portfolio Construction Symposium who are not members of the institute.  This will be a great opportunity to see whether we can get some of these investment specialists and see if they can pick up practice management and other things as well.”

The Professional Advisers Association (PAA) is also holding its annual conference in Auckland. OnePath is holding its adviser conference in Martinborough.

Niko Kloeten can be contacted at niko@goodreturns.co.nz

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Comments from our readers

On 24 January 2013 at 10:03 am John Milner said:
Although I have not made my decision yet, I probably will not attend this years conference. It will be the first time in a decade I have not attended the conference. I feel the IFA has sold out to a competing provider and abdicated their commitment to its members. Although I have a lot of respect for Graham Rich, I have not been impressed with Grahams comments and behaviour at recent conferences when introducing another provider that has a contrary view of investment than his.
On 24 January 2013 at 1:06 pm jon said:
The light is now growing brighter.
On 24 January 2013 at 3:44 pm Independent Observer said:
I would have thought that a key component of the IFAs value proposition was their proprietary conference.

With this event being outsourced, I’m curious to understand what justifies membership fees.
On 24 January 2013 at 4:16 pm Eric Simpson said:
@JM agree it's tedious listening to his snide comments.
Can't understand why the IFA changed its mind for the benefit of another party.
As if PAA members are going to trundle along to an IFA event.
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