AAA grows as AXA retired
As the AXA brand heads towards its retirement, the group that was formerly the AXA Advisers Association is about to unveil a number of business partnerships with product providers.
Friday, February 22nd 2013, 1:00PM 2 Comments
by Niko Kloeten
AAA Advisers Association chief executive Wayne Smith said the group had reached agreements with three business partners late last year, with the possibility of a fourth partnership being signed later this year.
He declined to name the providers but said the partnerships were the first the AAA had developed outside of AMP/Axa, which the group reached an agreement with last year.
Smith said exact details of the business partnerships would differ depending on the company but they would offer a “raft of benefits” to AAA members including access to product training.
“There’s also commission structure. The probability is that an association like us can negotiate slightly better commission structure than the individual knocking on the door of the company,” he said.
“And with the aging adviser population there might be companies that are prepared to look at arrangements or specific agreements for allowing people to exit in terms of buying the book.
AMP is doing away with the Axa brand at the end of March and Smith said Axa’s demise vindicated the decision of the AAA to branch out and work with other providers, which had been a “pretty significant strategic change” in the last three or four years.
He said the regulatory regime for advisers, that requires them to act in the best interests of clients, had made it more important for advisers to work with a number of providers rather than just one.
“The decision to look at diversifying the number of companies we deal with has proved to be very wise,” he said.
“There are probably one or two other adviser associations who would quite like to be in our position right now.”
And although the AAA isn’t planning any mergers with other adviser groups, Smith said the 250-member organisation would keep an eye out.
“That’s obviously an issue we are thinking about. There are some groups out there that I suspect will be looking for a home in the future.”
Niko Kloeten can be contacted at email@example.com
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