2 years ago

Blue Chip Issue 81

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Blue Chip is a quarterly journal for the financial planning industry and is the official publication of the Financial Planning Institute of Southern Africa NPC (FPI), effective from the January 2020 edition. Blue Chip publishes contributions from FPI and other leading industry figures, covering all aspects of the financial planning industry. Blue Chip takes this opportunity to wish the FPI a happy 40th anniversary. Congratulations!

On the money Making

On the money Making waves this quarter Collaborative partnerships, professional convention and midlife money makeover COLLABORATIVE PARTNERSHIP The Collaborative Exchange and the Association of Black Securities and Investment Professionals (ABSIP) have entered into an agreement, whereby both parties have agreed to work together in areas of their respective businesses where such opportunities are identified. ABSIP is the lead custodian in transformation in the South African financial services industry. Both parties have identified several projects that are mutually beneficial. FPI PROFESSIONAL CONVENTION 2021 The Financial Planning Institute of Southern Africa (FPI) Convention 2021 goes virtual – prepare to be wowed. The FPI’s 2021 “The Future is Human” Convention will be held as a pure digital event. Due to Covid-19 restrictions and the vast demand for convention seats, the FPI is hosting 1Life, an alternative solution CONVENTION DETAILS for financial Date: advisors 25 and 26 October 2021 its 2021 convention as a digital-only event. To ensure that attendees get the maximum benefit from the convention, the FPI has partnered with The Conference Company and world-leading digital events software provider EventsAIR to bring you a truly mind-blowing digital experience. THE FUTURE IS HUMAN The FPI decided to give attendees what they really wanted at this year’s convention, and asked its members to choose the theme, topics and speakers. “The Future is Human” was selected as a theme because now, more than ever, financial planners and advisors are using technology in every aspect of their practices, from practice management to financial modelling. Venue: Online Time: 08h00 – 17h00 CPD: 12.5 verifiable hours COST FPI member: R2 500 Non-member: R3 000 MIDLIFE MONEY MAKEOVER by Kim Potgieter I wrote Midlife Money Makeover in the middle of the Covid pandemic. While this pandemic has taught us many things, it also highlighted the many difficult challenges clients of the financial services industry face. I have listened to heartbreaking client stories and have had many discussions with planners about the tough conversations with clients going through momentous changes. With this book, I wanted to find a way to help clients and planners, no matter the type of transition – whether it’s midlife, death, divorce, loss of income, retirement or any other. It’s about pausing, tuning in and really listening to what’s going on in your client’s head and heart; 12 and then guiding them through practical steps to formulate a sustainable plan for reinvention. There is a certain liberation in knowing that you have choices for every aspect of your life – including your money. And when clients decide to own that power and start to consciously create a life that they are excited to live, chances are they will end up living their best lives. This book is a call to action to take control of both your life and your money – and to put money where it belongs – as an enabler of your life. The Change in Mindset Journal accompanies the book. It is designed as a workbook and contains many additional exercises to guide people in healing their relationship with money and create their best lives. Midlife Money Makeover and the Journal are available for purchase on Kim’s website, in all good bookstores and e-tailer websites.

On the money Making waves this quarter EVALUATING UMBRELLA FUNDS The number of umbrella funds available, as well as the assets under management in umbrella funds, has grown significantly over the last five years as smaller standalone funds seek to manage costs and administration procedures more efficiently, according to a recent Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) report. Employers who decide to transition from a standalone arrangement to an umbrella fund are tasked with choosing retirement fund solutions that lead to the best outcomes for their employees. This can prove challenging, as the available service offerings vary considerably. Understand the governance of the fund Each umbrella fund is governed by a board of trustees tasked with performing an oversight function and making decisions that ensure the best possible outcomes for members. Hazel Hopkins, senior partner at Axiomatic Consultants, advises employers to examine the structures of these boards, paying careful attention to the balance between sponsor-appointed trustees and independent trustees, and to ascertain whether members have any input when it comes to appointing trustees. Adv. Christi Franken, business development executive at Efficient Benefit Consulting, agrees and says it is important to identify any conflicts of interest that the trustees may have – particularly when dealing with “one-stop shops”, as trustees should be able to make unfettered decisions. Vusi Maswili, director at ASI Financial Services, says that in addition to testing the credibility of trustees, one should examine the annual financial statements and reports, explore the fund’s track record, find out how many complaints have been lodged against the fund and whether there have been any non-compliance issues. This can help paint a picture of how well a fund is managed. TECHNOLOGY DRIVEN The Hamburg-headquartered German software developer, novomind AG, has started to intensify its activity in the South African market. With a local presence in Cape Town, and the cooperation of local partners, novomind ensures customer proximity. According to the novomind claim, “Customer focused. Technology driven”, proximity to customers and a consistent focus on their unique needs, has always been key to novomind’s success. Being a German and European technology leader in its specific field of expertise, novomind develops efficient software solutions for fast, modern and high-performing online operations in commerce and customer service. Among novomind’s customers are institutions and associations, as well as government agencies of all sizes, financial services providers, mid-sized companies and international conglomerates. While novomind’s software is partly cloud-based and on-premises, the company’s SaaS (software as a service approach) means that it can be integrated flexibly in almost any environment. “With our software technology, we are enabling our customers to continuously increase their number of digital customer relationships across all channels and to strengthen the value of these relationships”, says Michelle Greeff, novomind Business Development Manager in Cape Town. “We are passionate about South Africa and would like our software solutions to create an impressive digital footprint all across the country.” DIRECTORS MORE BULLISH ABOUT FUTURE BUSINESS CONDITIONS Company directors in South Africa feel predominantly negative about economic conditions facing South Africa in coming months and are also increasingly concerned over a shortage of skilled labour as well as sometimes onerous union demands. That’s the top line from the 2021 Institute of Directors in South Africa (IoDSA) Sentiment Index – the sixth iteration of the study. The survey seeks to gauge how South African directors view the current operating climate. The survey was conducted earlier this year when South Africa was on a national adjusted Level 3 lockdown due to the rising cases of Covid-19. The IoDSA’s Vikeshni Vandayar says: “Governance and corporate services who oversaw the report say while serious macroeconomic concerns understandably remain around the boardroom table, there is a welcome upside in that the perception of general business conditions has improved from 2020.” She believes this may be because of the positive adaptation to the so-called new normal conditions of remote and virtual working. This year’s survey included key questions around technology and its uptake given the Covid-19-driven move to a virtual workplace. It’s an issue that patently needs more top-level attention with just 46% of respondents believing boards are devoting enough time to discussion around technology and its future role. Only half of those surveyed believed that directors had a high-level understanding of cybersecurity risks. Vandayar says while directors are learning to live with the flux and mutability caused by the pandemic, most respondents still feel the uncertainty of the South African economy has impacted their business the most. To that end, corruption and inadequate government service delivery remain in the top-ranked challenges affecting business. Energy security is not as much of a concern as it was two years ago but still ranks highly along with inadequate government service delivery.

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