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The Principals’ Community forges its own path

Kon Costas this week announced the launch of The Principals’ Community, a new business set up to service industry leading self-licensed financial advisers. The business will continue to deliver practice management, networking and business supports following its exit from BT Financial Group.

According to a media release, the community has evolved from what was formerly part of BT’s Practice Principal’s Group and with Costas and BT decided to part ways amicably. The group will seek to provide “enhanced services and support to meet the demands of successful self-licensed businesses” in the new post Royal Commission era where adviser independence has become a highly valued commodity.

Prior to its closure, the BT Community had 134 members, who authorised some 1,300 advisers and manage over $50 billion located across the country. Costas is confident that with key team members joining him from BT, “overwhelming support” from the current community and the continuity of services, that the independent platform will attract new businesses to join the community.  

Commenting on the announcement, Costas says: “I am thrilled by the opportunity to build on the existing foundations of the successful community and provide quality advice businesses the framework that facilitates the connectivity of business leaders to share insights, learning, challenges and opportunities. In addition, the community has a strong focus on the ongoing professional development of advisers where they gain fresh insights in advice strategies, and a better understanding of the practical application of the regulatory and legislative environment through our dedicated governance team.

“The need for quality financial advice has never been more pronounced at a time when markets are volatile and regulatory oversight has never been more demanding of advisers. The Principals’ Community sees its mission as helping its members in these difficult times.”

The Principals’ Community will be focused on delivering three core pillars:

  • A community mindset allowing for likeminded self-licensed businesses to come together and benefit from peer-to-peer learning;
  • A highly experienced governance team providing commercial support in managing licences and adhering to best practice, development, and regulatory updates; and
  • Scalability and ability to leverage off selected third party service providers including Advice technology, Education and Research to name a few

“Following the Royal Commission, requirements from AFSL holders have become much tougher, resulting in licence holders increasingly engaging with their peers for support and business insights into how to scale their businesses.

Establishing a self-licensed model independent of an institution also removes conflicts of interest and risks surrounding breach reporting obligations and provides licence holders the services and support to evolve with the ever-changing landscape,” he says.

A BT spokesperson says: “We have decided to close our Practice Principals’ Community from 10 December 2021 to focus on our core platform’s capability, technical and strategy support through our technical team and a series of events and masterclasses planned throughout the year. We wish Kon and his team all the very best with his new venture and look forward to engaging with The Principals’ Community.”

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