Sequoia suffers ‘rare’ weekly adviser loss

Wealth Data Colin Williams Sequoia AMP Group WT Financial Group Countplus insignia financial

8 March 2024
| By Jasmine Siljic |
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Sequoia Financial Group has seen a net loss of seven advisers this week, with Wealth Data founder Colin Williams describing it as a “rare” occurrence.

In the week ending 7 March, Wealth Data reported that Sequoia was down by seven advisers. This was driven by a new licensee commencing with four advisers who left InterPrac, which is owned by Sequoia.

“[This is] a rare big weekly loss for the group,” Williams commented.

Previously, the financial services firm often saw consistent adviser growth each week. It even took the crown for adviser growth in 2023, welcoming 33 advisers throughout the year.

Sequoia has also signalled its target to hit 500 advisers in its licensee network by 2026, to be achieved by acquiring adviser licensing services from subscale AFSL providers.

Moreover, Sequoia chief executive Garry Crole recently ruled out acquiring another licensee and instead hopes to benefit from adviser switching to boost numbers.

Crole said: “It’s unlikely we’d buy another licensee, it just opens up opportunities for competitors. Some of the licensees that have been acquired over the period, the advisers there didn’t want to be acquired and started looking for new homes, and we have been a beneficiary of that.”

Beyond Sequoia, Williams described: “It was a busy week with some ‘old-fashioned battles’ at larger licensees as they take advisers off each other.”

AMP Group lost net eight advisers – the highest weekly decline – which was underpinned by Count appointing five advisers from AMP Financial Planning.

Meanwhile, WT Financial Group was down by net four advisers while Insignia saw the greatest gain with five advisers. This was due to RI Advice, an advice practice in Insignia’s licensee network, appointing four advisers from Millenium3, which Insignia sold to WT Financial in December.

Insignia has retained its position as Australia’s second-largest advice licensee, after Wealth Data previously expected Count’s completed acquisition of Diverger to overtake Insignia in second place. This is due to the exit of Godfrey Pembroke advisers not yet being finalised.

As of 7 March, the number of advisers at the top three licensees are as follows:

Licensee Number of financial advisers
AMP Group 863
Insignia Financial     784
Count Limited 730

Source: Wealth Data

“Insignia had indicated a deal to sell their Godfrey Pembroke licensee back to advisers, but that deal has not been announced as finalised. If the 54 Godfrey Pembroke advisers leave, that would put Insignia at 730 and dip below Count,” Williams explained.

Weekly movements

This week saw a net change of zero, with the current number of advisers remaining at 15,625.

Eight new entrants joined the industry and 99 advisers were active with appointments or resignations.

Looking at weekly growth, 34 licensee owners had net gains of 51 advisers. Following Insignia’s rise of five advisers, three licensees were up by net four each.

Ord Minnett welcomed three new entrants, while three licensee owners were up by net two each. A tail of 25 licensees rose by net one each, including Perpetual and Fiducian.

For the weekly losses, 26 licensee owners had net losses of 48 advisers all up. Four licensees decreased by two each, while 18 licensee owners lost one adviser each.

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