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View the article online at http://citywire.co.uk/wealth-manager/article/a662110

SJP assets soar to £34.8bn as adviser numbers climb

by Alex Steger on Feb 28, 2013 at 07:45

SJP assets soar to £34.8bn as adviser numbers climb

St James’s Place (SJP) saw assets under management grow to £34.8 billion in 2012, a 22% increase from the start of the year, as adviser numbers swelled to 1,788.

The restricted network was boosted by £5.9 billion of new investment and pension business, 13% up on 2011, which combined with retention of existing client funds resulted in net inflows of £3.4 billion.

New business profit was up for the year at £276.8 million, a 13% increase from £246 million in 2011, although operating profit dipped slightly, 1.5%, from £371.5 million in 2011 to £365.9 million for 2012.

It again raised its dividend by 33% from 2011, having raised it by the same amount for the last two years.

Adviser numbers grew to 1,788, an 8% increase, and SJP said it had over 2,000 diploma qualified advisers and support staff.

Profit before shareholder tax was £134.6 million, up 23% on the previous year’s £109.7 million.

While SJP’s life and unit business both posted an increase in profits, £111.7 million up from £89.1 million, and £33.5 million up from £27.8 million, its distribution business profits fell to £5.3 million, compared to £6.1 million in 2011.

SJP’s results for 2012 reveal that it paid £9 million in Financial Services Authority (FSA) fees and Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) bills.

SJP chief executive David Bellamy (pictured) said: ‘Whilst we recognise that there is still economic uncertainty, everything we understand about our marketplace tells us that there has never been a greater need for high quality advice delivered by a trusted adviser, backed by a well-respected company.’

‘We have good momentum across all aspects of the business and are therefore confident in our ability to continue our growth in line with our medium term objectives in 2013 and beyond.’

4 comments so far. Why not have your say?

Reg

Feb 28, 2013 at 08:27

SJP seems to be the new home for all the ex-bank assurance sales people who were made redundant, and their old clients and old products.

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Philip Milton

Feb 28, 2013 at 10:04

One of the outcomes of the 'RDR' is that truly independent advice is harder to find now. Several advisers who had always reviewed the 'whole' investment market when providing guidance are now called 'restricted' if they don't advise on all aspects of the financial arena, putting them on the same plane as direct sales forces which just sell their host company's products. We are staunchly independent, however defined, incidentally.

However, at least the new regime is making selling organisations come clean over charges: I have great admiration of St James's Place's marketing prowess (offering 'guaranteed partners' whatever that meant) for example but it now looks very expensive whereas before many of its customers perceived the advice and ongoing servicing were 'free' whatever the small print may have said. Clients buying a Unit Trust will suffer a 5% fee with ongoing charges between 2.1-2.3% of which 3% goes to the salesman and 0.5%pa thereafter. Chief Executive David Bellamy says "we are not the cheapest but by far not the most expensive". However, it will be interesting to see if people vote with their feet when they compare these levels against the average charges elsewhere (especially in times of low returns too) and of course, cost is not the only thing you wish to buy from a financial adviser. In 'Money Marketing', Page Russell's director was quoted as saying "We would be uncomfortable levying those kind of charges. In my view this charging structure is stretching the bounds of what is appropriate."

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PensionsManager

Mar 01, 2013 at 03:04

Their charges are incredible, their notepaper superb, their choice of investment consultant (Stamford) excellent (although unusual); enviable track record it has to be said (in many, but not all cases). They exude success (and excess), almost a thinking man's Allied Crowbar. But I fear the chickens will come home to roost at some point - surely the reality of what is charged will hit home when displayed in pounds and pence. But their customers may not care - perhaps they think thy get what they pay for, or are too proud to admit that they have been paying too much all along?

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Anonymous 1 needed this 'off the record'

Mar 01, 2013 at 21:34

Reg You are very astute !

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