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FS Power50 - Most Influential Advisers in Australia 2019
The financial advisers in this guide are a diverse group: some specialise in responsible investment advice, some provide financial advice to specific professions, and some focus on addressing market gaps, be it financial advice for women or the LGBTQI community.
But they all have one thing in common, they wield influence that can create the blueprint for financial advice in the future.
Not all of them are familiar names but just because they are not making a lot of noise doesn't mean they are not making waves. Meet our 2019 FS Power50.
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Perspective Financial Services
Esther's journey to becoming a successful financial adviser started when her marriage ended. She realised that if she and her three young daughters were going to thrive she was going to have to implement a plan. Since then, she's created plans for many other women too. Esther is well known for using her experience to assist people in difficult situations and is known in the Jewish community for working with Jewish divorces.
David is a respected financial adviser and author of Wealth with Purpose: A Common Sense Guide to Wealth, Investing and an Inspiring Life. He founded Capital Partners in 1999 with the promise of authentic, objective financial advice and has built the business into an award winning practice. David believes success is all about having clarity on what you want to achieve and learning how to make smarter decisions.
Main Street Financial Solutions
Charles co-founded his firm in 2014, following 13 years as a financial planner at Shadforth. Charles is a regular media commentator and advocate for the financial planning industry, believing it has the ability to change lives when everyone works together. He has authored a number of finance books, including a national best seller. His inclusion in the 2019 FS Power50 marks his third consecutive entry.
James is a big believer in ethical investing and using a clients' ethical criteria as to make a positive impact through sustainable investing. He has worked at an ethical ratings agency in the UK which measured the material impacts of ESG issues on companies, giving him a deep knowledge of the issues at hand. James is a member of the Ethical Advisers' Co-op and has attained certification by the Responsible Investment Association of Australia. Outside his investing work, James has set up Janubeard to raise funds to cure children's cancer.
Fox & Hare Wealth
Diversity and inclusion are core to Fox & Hare's business model. Jessica and her partner in the business believe financial advice should be accessible to all and has the potential to improve everyone's financial wellness. At Fox & Hare, Jessica has worked hard to engage young people and the LGBTQI community with financial advice and fight the stigma that financial advice is only for older people and the super wealthy. Outside the office, Jessica is actively involved in YWCA Australia, helping women and girls develop leadership skills.
Believing advice gives everyday Australians a voice, Marshall has dedicated two decades to his clients and the advice community. His business, Evalesco, was one of the founding firms of the Australian Advice Network in 2017 and Marshall is well-known for his honest, no-nonsense approach to advocating for the industry and communicating the power of advice.
With over 30-years' experience Marisa knows how to get the strategy right to ensure her client's goal are met. Participating in a number of community fund raising activities to encourage financial literacy and education for girls, Marisa has dedicated herself to bettering the lives of those around her. Marisa is chair of the Financial Planning Association and has been chair of the FPA's Policy and Regulations Committee, chair of the FASEA working group and a member of the Audit and Risk Committee.
JBS Financial Strategists
A former winner of the AFA's Adviser of the Year award, Jenny believes advisers are in a privileged position to help Australians achieve their dreams and aspirations. Jenny counts speaking before more than 8000 Million Dollar Round Table members at the MDRT global conference in Sydney this year as her top career highlight.
Wealth Planning Partners
Amanda has been involved in the finance industry since 1991. She is passionate about the benefits of proper risk protection and aged care strategies for families and about giving clients the retirements of their dreams. Well respected in the industry, Amanda is often called upon to comment on industry news and is involved with several financial advice associations as well as philanthropic efforts.
Since starting his business in 2013, James has focussed on improving the financial wellbeing of business owners, individuals and families. He prides himself on growing a fresh business with highest compliance and service standards. James says one of his career highlights has been mentoring other financial services professionals within the community and getting involved in financial education.
Rod lists one of his career highlights as being treasurer of his kid's preschool. From a background in HR management and account, Rod built his private practice up from scratch with his partner and prides himself on keeping the business aligned to his values and on providing high quality advice to a small, select group of clients.
Cooper Wealth Management
Over almost two-decades, Felicity has earned the reputation of a seasoned veteran of the advice industry. She serves clients Australia-wide from her Gold Coast based practice and is founder of both Cooper Wealth Management and The Financial Woman. Felicity's work in financial literacy has seen her help educate mature women, understanding that women approaching retirement and in retirement are a demographic in need of financial literacy and support.
Sue is one of the most well respected advisers in Australia, with an impressive career and legacy. In the late 1990s Sue transformed Pitcher Partners, then a mid-tier accounting practice, into a $5 billion wealth management business. With more than 25 years' experience providing advice in all economic conditions and a commitment to independent advice, Sue's clients - including universities, charities and major institutions - know they can rely on her to get them through anything.
Seeing his team grown and develop and offering interns paid employment and valuable training is some of Josh's most rewarding work. Starting a business was one of Josh's dreams and he understands that no one is really a one-man-band and that relationships are the most fulfilling part of any career or personal journey.
Eleanor is a stalwart of the industry and a fountain of knowledge when it comes to financial advice. She has recently devoted her time to research, drafting proposals for submission to the Federal Government on special disability trust provisions and downsizer contributions. She believes professional financial advice offers immense value in achieving deciphering the path to achieve one's most deeply held goals.
As the host of the successful She's on the Money podcast, Victoria is empowering tens of thousands of women to take control of their finances and live the lifestyle they wish to. At the same time, she runs her own advice business, Zella Wealth and was a finalist for the 2019 AFA Rising Star of the Year award.
Shadforth Financial Group
Through 15 years with Shadforth, Finn has mentored a number of younger advisers and has become a true leader in the industry. Finn uses social media to spread information about the benefits of financial advice and to offer tips on financial wellness. He says his biggest passion is helping people to feel more financially confident about their futures and helping those who perhaps wouldn't ordinarily be able to afford financial advice.
Simon spent 12 years advising not-for-profit organisations and high net-worth families as a senior client adviser at Macquarie Bank before Koda Capital. He understands that today's investment environment is complex and challenging and that's why independent advice is so important to guide clients towards their goals.
Atlas Wealth Management
Specialising in expats, Brett says the financial implications of taking off overseas need to be communicated better to Australians so they have something to show for their time away from home. Brett would know, given he first became an expat at the age of six after his father was transferred to Arizona with the Air Force. He says the value of advice is in its ability to guide and mentor Australians who want to make good money decisions, but lack the expertise to do so by themselves.
Knight Financial Advisors
With a business dedicated to helping those that have endured catastrophic injury, the advice Jason provides is truly life-changing. In the almost two decades since becoming an adviser, Jason has built up an impressive following through regular appearances on television and weekly radio segments, including no-cost, no-obligation financial health checks for listeners in an effort to boost their financial literacy.
Insight Investment Partners
Having been a qualified adviser since 1999, Christopher has seen immense change in the industry. When the Royal Commission was announced he saw that advice businesses would have to change the ways they monitored and delivered advice. To solve the problem, Christopher turned to technology to manage his business' compliance regime and produce compliant advice documents in a streamlined way. Since then, his practice has thrived.
As chief executive of both the Australian Advice Network and RFS Advice, Paul believes financial advice is about more than wealth accumulation and management, and says the support advisers give clients through tough times is what really makes a difference in their lives. Since 2011, Paul has overseen RFS' 472% growth in revenue and counts it among his top career highlights.
The Wealth Designers
Cara dove right into meeting the new educational requirements this year, passing the FASEA exam in the first sitting and is well on the way to completing her ethics course. Somehow, she also found the time this year to hit the road with the AFA - travelling around the country speaking to advisers about how to establish their practices in the new industry environment. On top of that, she is involved with a not-for-profit called Quorum that aims to share knowledge with small business owners in order to achieve exceptional client outcomes.
Cathryn knows from personal experience that to thrive everyone needs security, and that includes financial security. She wants her clients to have a strong asset and income base so that they can realise their dream futures. Inspired by her desire to support others in achieving financial independence, Cathryn has combined her investment banking and financial services background with executive coaching experience to create Twelve Wealth. The firm recently merged with Minchin Moore Private Wealth Advisers.
Fox & Hare
Glen landed a job at Macquarie Bank when he was just 19 and after 10 years he left as one of the youngest directors in the company. Since starting Fox & Hare with his business partner, Glen has become an advocate for diversity and inclusion as well as for the benefits financial advice can offer people at all stages of life. He is involved with Out Australia, an organisation which mentors and supports LGBTIQ professionals through their early career.
Haywood Financial Management
Scott has become a trusted voice in the industry, regularly commenting on financial news for TV and radio. He operates a number of businesses including The Finance Guru and Divorce Planning and is an advocate for financial literacy for children and schools. As an adviser, Scott specialises in risk insurance and says he has been immensely proud to get people through tough times like illnesses.
Nicole Heales Financial
Nicole has dedicated much of her professional life to bettering financial outcomes for women. Making women aware of issues like the gender gap in retirement savings and helping them understand what is possible when you take control of your finances is Nicole's passion. Her business provides complete financial advice and education for women - encompassing everything from super to mortgages to wealth creation. And Nicole has established a network of female advisers in other professions to ensure all her clients' needs are met.
SWA Financial Planners
Passionate about seeing Australians achieve lifetime financial security; Alison works tirelessly building SWA Financial Planning mentoring young advisers and employees of the firm. Alison is currently serving as director on the board of the Financial Planning Association of Australia. She says integrity and responsibility are at the heart of her work and when she's off the clock, she loves to hit the tennis courts with her family.
Bridges Personal Investment Services
From starting in the industry as a personal assistant, Nerida is proud to say she's worked her way up the ladder to own the business. Based in Nowra, Nerida believes in keeping jargon minimal offering a friendly service with a simple approach and a big impact. Her down-to-earth approach is working as the business continues to grow through referrals and Nerida has earned an impressive reputation in the industry.
Elston Private Wealth
One of Dean's career highlights has been mentoring junior staff into successful advisers and seeing them achieve great outcomes for their own clients. A true advocate for the industry, Dean loves to see clients achieve lifetime goals like travelling the world and prides himself on his ability to provide both financial and emotional reassurance - removing the anxieties associated with managing money.
It's hard to imagine somebody having the time to run four different podcasts and advise clients, but somehow Glen makes it work. And work it does - My Millennial Money is the top education podcast in Australia and his new offering dedicated to Gen Z is quickly gaining ground. When he's not getting back to basics with his listeners, Glen serves as the NSW state director for the Association of Financial Advisers.
Sydney Aged Care F. A.
Focussing on the specialisation of aged care advice since 2010 and launching his business dedicated to the specialisation in 2014, Michael has been able to flourish in what he views as an underrepresented area of advice. Michael gets enormous satisfaction helping clients gain the confidence to make informed decisions when it comes to aged care, so that they can get on with enjoying the things that really matter in life.
Neil's advice philosophy is "be the planner you want to see" and he happily reports he'd be delighted to see himself. Neil knows there are no shortcuts to success; it's a simple matter of making a meaningful positive impact for clients.He describes his speciality as offering clients a financial plan without commissions or hidden charges.
The consummate hard-worker, Olivia got her start in business manning the family road-side fruit stall in country Queensland. Olivia says one of her career highlights was attending Harvard Business School on scholarship. She is proud of her businesses transparent fee model and unbiased advice and is often called upon to speak across the country and comment on industry news.
The Independent F. A.
Tim believes a financial advices needs to be someone can trust to guide them through that complexity. Tim has a decade of investment banking experience at some of the biggest banks in the world behind him and is regularly turned to for informed opinion by the Australian Financial Review. Outside of work, Tim is a dedicated family man with a passion for history and sport.
Ethical Investment Advisers
Driven by elthics above all else, Karen isn't shy about her convictions. In 2014, she realised there was no fossil fuel free Australian share fund so set up the Ethical Advisers' Mid Cap Model. Karen says watching Al Gore's Inconvenient Truth ignited her passion for ethical investing.
Community is at the base of everything Ben does, which is why makes sure that when he's kicking clients goals he is also giving back to those in need. So far Ben and his team at Pivot have provided over 17,000 days' worth of life-saving clean water in Africa and Asia and close to 15,000 days of e-learning to underprivileged people in India, just to name a couple. Ben started Pivot to do things a little differently, and focuses on helping young professionals make smart financial decisions.
In addition to his work as an adviser, Geoff is a lecturer and course coordinator in applied financial planning and superannuation at the University of South Australia, and has tutored there since 2009. Between servicing the needs of the 80 families on GAP Financial's annual advice program and helping Uni SA receive FASEA accreditation for its Graduate Diploma in Financial Planning, Geoff's year has been full to the brim, influencing both the next and the current generations of advisers.
Shadforth Financial Group
A trained economist, Andrew says he's proud to have serviced some of his clients for more than 20 years, having joined Shadforth as a graduate. He believes advice is important because the partnership between planners and clients ensures clarity, and provides insight and education to help guide clients towards better financial outcomes. His inclusion in the 2019 FS Power50 marks his second consecutive entry.
DLP Life Design
Donna is passionate about helping women through tough times, having gone through her own traumatic experience.When her husband died suddenly while he was competing in an Ironman competition, instead of finding compassion after the incident Donna had to fight to get her family's affairs in order. She understands that clients often come to an adviser in times of deep need, and empathy is the most significant value an adviser can add.
An advocate for financial wellness and financial literacy, Rebecca Pritchard is a dynamic force in the advice industry. Through social media, Rebecca has made financial concepts accessible to everyone. She believes that through education everyone can take control of their financial future and enhance their wealth and their life.
When David's not on his mountain bike he's on his road bike... but when he's not on either he's offering financial advice that truly aligns with his clients values. Certified by the Responsible Investing Association Australia, David digs into what his clients believe in to create ethically minded financial plans. He understands that you can do well by doing good.
As director of The Australian Advice Network and last year's AFA Adviser of the Year, Hugh is a leader in the industry and a champion of the benefits of financial advice. He believes in a client-first approach and in actively bringing down product related costs for clients. Hugh has plenty of client success stories from Centaur Financial to share and knows that achieving financial freedom isn't just for the super-rich.
Julia is the state chair of AFA Inspire and provides pro bono financial advice to breast cancer survivors in conjunction with the Breast Cancer Research Centre in Western Australia. A regular contributor to discussions about the importance of financial literacy, Julia believes advisers and financial coaches are well placed to help Australians navigate the nation's complex superannuation landscape to ensure clients realise their life goals.
James' podcast has become a go-to source for industry news and commentary. He aims to cut through the noise in financial advice to get to the heart of what is really going on and provide some food for thought. James has become a valuable a prolific commentator for the industry and his social media voice inspires positivity amongst financial advisers.
Unified Financial Services
Specialising in the health industry Michelle established her business in 1994, pioneering the offering of fee for advice and service. Having already accumulated a number of awards, including Mentor of the Year award and IFA Excellence Awards, her life's mission is to inspire, build and grow strength and independence in others.
Robina Financial Solutions, the business Troy founded, is a multi-award winning practice founded on three key areas of advice: wealth accumulation, pre and post retirement planning and aged care advice. Troy specialises in guiding clients through the pre and post retirement journey, working on cash flow and portfolio construction to help retirees enjoy income and give them peace of mind.
Tim has been recognised as driving change in the financial advice industry, having founded a practice established as fee based with the aim of delivering comprehensive wealth management services to individuals, families and privately held companies. With 28 years' experience in the industry, Tim's mantra is success comes from focusing on and delivering for the needs of clients.
Ben focusses on business owners and high net worth individuals through his work at Perpetual Private. Getting involved with community work and giving back to the industry is important to Ben. He's involved in fundraising through the Future2 Foundation and supports Women in Thought Leadership. Ben also tries to attract new blood to the industry by getting involved in educational initiatives.
Charlie's key areas of expertise include private business and family advisory services, retirement planning and employee share scheme advice as well as redundancy planning and investment and administration services to high net worth individuals. He's been a partner at Pitcher Partners since 2005 and leads its wealth management division which has $2.4 billion of assets under management.