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Bluerock invited to be EuroGroup Associate
The EuroGroup Consulting Alliance brings together consulting practices across Europe with a wide range of sectors and skills. Bluerock has been invited to be a Correspondent for the UK market.
e-Business in Life & Pensions
Kevin Webb, Consulting Director of Bluerock speaks on eBusiness within Life & Pensions.
Bluerock partners with Award winning web technology company
Bluerock and Vuture are collaborating to take their unique marketing tool to the financial services market. This innovative web based platform allows users to create and manage all of their marketing materials online at dramatically reduced cost and increased speed to market.
Click here for more information...
Ways to narrow the Pensions Gap - Mark Tennant
Mark Tennant, Chairman of Bluerock talks to Pauline Skpala on FTfm about the outlook for Ucits in the wake of events like the Madoff affair and possible solutions for pensions savings in the UK
e-Business in Life & Pensions
Kevin Webb, Consulting Director of Bluerock speaks on eBusiness within Life & Pensions. For a copy of the presentation please register for articles and put "eBusiness " in the area of interest box.
Depreciating Assets - A Key SME Problem?
Simon Woolcott of Marchwood Associates explores the issue of small businesses trying to borrow against decreasing assets, are there alternatives? Register for the full article. Quote "SME"
Bluerock's model is to deliver high content, high value consultants, but many clients sometimes need other types of resource. Bluerock therefore has a sister company Aldermans which can provide all their contract needs with the consistent Bluerock quality. More....
Bluerock celebrates 10 years in business!
Ten years ago this May Bluerock was formed, with its first job being with the Woolwich. Since then we have worked with many top tier clients and often on a regular basis. We would like to thank all of our clients past and present for helping us to make it to this landmark. We are looking forward to the next 10 years.
2009 Budget Impact on Insurers
The reduction in higher rate tax relief for those earning in excess of £150,000 p.a. from April 2011, tapering to basic rate level for those earning £180,000, has had an immediate and damaging effect on UK insurance company shares. More...
The announcement of plans to merge Watson Wyatt and Towers Perrin, with significant planned cost reductions, is an indicator of the problems faced by investment and benefit consultants in the current market. In the UK, Watson Wyatt has a held a dominant position amongst FTSE 100 firms, particularly in the golden era of defined benefit schemes. Towers Perrin has a smaller footprint in the UK, but has been a thought-leader in some areas of employee benefits and reward. In 2005, TP entered into a JV with EDS to create a new HR Outsourcing entity, recognising the sub-scale nature of TP operations globally.
The "new" focus on 3 segments - Benefits, Talent and Rewards, and Risk and Financial Services - will continue to see downward pressure on revenues and margins as corporate clients disintermediate benefit consultants and reduce their dependency on actuarial service providers. After the recent Mercer-Callan coupling was called off, the investment consulting market remains fragmented and individualistic as ever. Competition in other areas comes from the advisory arms of audit firms, providers (such as Fidelity) as well as specialist HR and recruitment players. Attempts to build added-value services such as employee communications and general management consultancy have proved difficult and remain insubstantial relative to the whole.
How the market reacts to the prospects arising from this deal will be interesting, even if the partners of the two firms stand to gain financially.
Latest RDR update released
The FSA has published the latest paper on the RDR today - see paper
The regulator says the annualised costs of implementing its reforms amount to £140 million over five years. This represents around 0.3% of annual gross new business premiums or 1% of industry profits. It says there may also be 'short-term costs' as IFAs leave the business and higher costs for smaller investors as IFAs unwind cross subsidies. There will be a new dividing line between independent and restricted advice which will encompass a wide range of collective investment products, including investment trusts and structured products. Restricted advice It appears, however, that the term independent can be maintained by advisers operating in specialist areas such as retirement planning rather than for all products. The Basic Advice regime and execution-only sales are unaffected by the proposals.
The emphasis on appropriate qualifications, removal of commission bias and transparency in the customer proposition remain. The industry has until October 30 to comment with an end 2012 implementation deadline.