Perpetual is counting on the acquisition of the Trust Company to drive growth to its advice business, which has experienced “headwinds” due to a lack of confidence across the market.
Earlier in the week, Perpetual announced a 37 per cent increase in underlying profit after tax of $48.1 million for the half year to 31 December, 2013.
Perpetual Private’s profit before tax was up 11 per cent on the same period last year to $4.9 million, which CEO Geoff Lloyd said he was “happy with” given the lower total market flows.
“I think personally that high net worths are still in a lot of cash, but we haven’t been waiting for their confidence to return, we’ve been working on the business model - the foundations, the platform, the service model and the team that we need to better leverage that.”
Lloyd said the acquisition of the Trust Company - which was finalised in December last year - would bring “significant extra scale” to Perpetual Private, with an extra 50 per cent in funds under advice.
When asked how long it would take for Perpetual’s advice business to see the benefits of the merged client base, Lloyd said it could be up to 18 months.
“It takes longer in an advice business, because one of the drivers of it is the platform migration of clients through a number of their platforms to our one new platform, which we put in place last year,” he said.
Lloyd said while the company was always on the lookout for new talent, there would be no rush to hire new planners in 2014.
“We think we can take on more clients without more planners ¨ that’s because a lot of the work that we’ve done has freed up admin and capacity for greater productivity in our current planning force.”