Newcastle based Laurus Associates is investing in internal resources to assist the small team in reaching £120m funds under management this year.
Nearing £100m funds under management at present, the North East IFA has set the ambitious goal of growing business by more than 20% this year.
Planned strategic investment in innovative back office systems, staff training and appointing an additional support staff member aims to provide a streamlined service for North East corporate and personal clients.
With just two advisors and a support staff of four, Laurus has ensured their unique business model is what sets them apart in the market. This year’s development plan aims to safeguard future growth, with particular focus on the corporate market.
Laurus Associates director Karen Barwick said: “Our approach has always been a step ahead of industry standards and we believe this is the root of our success to date.
“We built our business model around the client’s needs, so when the 2013 regulatory changes to client charging pushed many small IFAs out the market, we continued to grow successfully.
“The majority of our new business is from referrals. Both Colin and I have had a particularly busy start to the year due to referrals alone. Our client-centric approach means providing transparent charging and holding regular meetings with existing clients to continuously provide value.
“We have found particular success recently with pension property purchases with our business owner clients, pension transfers and property investment. We see these areas as key channels of growth for the business this year.
“As a small team we also focus on staying ahead of the curve by investing strategically in internal resources. This means our capabilities, despite our size, make us a first-choice IFA in the region.”
Laurus has experienced 10% growth in funds under management in the past year, plus the most recent team appointment was in December 2016.
Laurus Associates director Colin Dawson explains development plans for the coming year: “We have always embraced technical advancements in our industry and with new, automated, dashboard-style apps and software being introduced regularly we plan to invest in our own back-office systems.
“We focus on training that helps develop our people to be multitalented, so that our staff skillset allows for a fluid workforce with an efficient client service. We want to appoint an additional Sales Support Administrator as this will free up more of mine and Karen’s time in achieving our business growth goals, as well as offering a springboard career opportunity for a graduate or apprentice.”
Karen and Colin hope their forward-thinking approach will help them achieve not only their 20% growth goal but also national recognition at the upcoming industry awards, where they will compete against much larger IFAs.
Karen concludes: “As a finalist at the UK’s Corporate Advisor Awards for two years running we hope our success to date and continued determination will help us bring back the gong to the North East this year.”