Royal London is to create a new division which will bring all of its IFA businesses under the control of a new arrival, following the departure of Brian Duffin next year.
The company announced today Duffin, the current chief executive of the Scottish Life brand, will leave the company at the end of March and is being replaced by John Deane (see front page for photo), currently group risk and compliance director at Old Mutual.
Deane will join the company on 1 April to head-up the newly-formed IFA division, which will see him take overall responsibility for Scottish Life, Scottish Life International and Bright Grey.
Industry sources suggest Deane's arrival could be the start of an wider shake-up of the Royal London firms, as the company has announced both Deane and Andrew Carter, chief executive of Royal London Asset Management (RLAM), will be appointed to the Royal London Group Board.
Carter says: “As well as presenting the perspective of asset management business at board level, I look forward to contributing on the many other issues that the company is dealing with.”
Meanwhile, Duffin says: “After 30 years' service with Scottish Life and Royal London, I am happy to step down as part of the reorganisation. I believe the new structure will be successful and I wish the group every success in the future.”
Duffin will leave the company in March so he will not be taking initial control of the IFA division when it is formed in the beginning of January. Instead, the interim period until Deane arrives in April will be overseen by Mike Yardley, group chief executive of Royal London.
Alasdair Buchanan, group head of communications, says the firm will still be doing business with employee benefit consultants (EBCs) and operating in the occupational pensions space, as the new label "IFA Division" is in fact "shorthand for independent distribution which includes IFA and EBCs".
He also confirmed David Kneeshaw will continue as chief executive of Scottish Life International.
“This announcement is just to inform people of our intention to form this new division at the beginning of January. And although Mike Yardley will oversee the interim period, it probably won’t be until April when John Deane arrives that the detail and direction will start to be sorted out.”
“As a result there isn’t really any more detail at the moment other than our objective to deliver a better service to IFAs and clients and to get the most efficient way of running the business.”
If you have any comments you would like to add to this story or would like to speak to its author about a similar subject, telephone Nyree Stewart on 020 7968 4558 or email [email protected]IFAonline
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