The New Zealand Financial Services Group (NZFSG) and Kepa have joined forces to create an “adviser powerhouse” dealer group with over 1,600 members. However, not everyone is satisfied with the organisations' decision.
Advisers have expressed their concerns that the merger would exert too much control over the country's adviser market – reducing competition, TMM Online reports.
One adviser told TMM Online that reduced choices in dealer groups might lead to increased costs for adviser businesses.
“NZFSG already had a massive share of the market, so I'd be amazed if this wasn't being looked at by the regulators,” the adviser said.
Read more: Two dealer groups merge into “adviser powerhouse”
Now that the merger has been completed, Kepa members will be integrated within the NZFSG-Loan Market dealer network, and its advisers can move onto NZFSG's MyCRM system. The other staff will also transfer to the merged business.
“While we are individually well-established and respected organisations recognised for providing excellent support to advisers, together we are stronger. We will take the best from all three organisations to deliver superior services for the combined membership,” said Kepa chief executive Brendon Neal.
“Kepa members will immediately benefit from access to MyCRM, and we'll be able to add depth to NZFSG’s support services, including online and classroom support for advisor qualifications; a learning management system for continuing professional development; advice audits and compliance checks; and many other options to support our members’ businesses.”
NZFSG chief executive Brendon Smith added: “With the industry facing complex and sweeping regulatory changes, New Zealand's independent financial advisors are facing an increasing compliance burden.”
“By combining our respective businesses and expertise, we can support advisers to navigate these changes with the added benefits of genuine scale.”