Advisers fuels Westpac's surge

Westpac Financial Services (WFS) has recorded another huge rise in net profit, up 43.5 per cent to $75.2 million for the six months to March 1999.

Westpac Financial Services (WFS) has recorded another huge rise in net profit, up 43.5 per cent to $75.2 million for the six months to March 1999.

WFS managing director David Fite says the result reflects a huge con-tribution from its 530 advisers who collectively brought in $2.4 bil-lion of retail sales in the half year.

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"The dramatic rise in profit has been driven by our advisers seeing an increasing number of our customer base," he says.

"Surveys of these customers found that two thirds of the customers had never seen a financial planner before. When you see potential such as this, you realise that you are not stealing market share but growing the total market."

Total funds under management to March 31 reached $23.1 billion, an increase of 23 per cent over the same period last year. Wholesale funds under management increased 13.6 per cent to $10.5 billion.

New premium income from life insurance rose 43 per cent, while gen-eral insurance sales lifted 22 per cent.

Fite says the group has not suffered any of the profit pains of other life insurance product providers, saying much of the growth in reve-nue from insurance had flowed through to the bottom line.




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