What do the best licensees all have in common?

Published 9 March 2021

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What do GPS Wealth, Affinia, Lifespan, Sentry, Matrix and RI Advice have in common? Let me stop you there – the answer we’re looking for is: “They were all finalists in the CoreData 2020 Licensee of the Year Awards”.

In the final analysis GPS was named the 2020 Licensee of the Year and the Independently Owned Licensee of the Year; and Affinia the Institutionally Affiliated Licensee of the year. All of the finalists and winners were identified through CoreData’s industry-standard Licensee Research, reflecting advisers’ ratings of the quality of service and support provided by their licensee.

Last year more than 600 financial advisers took part in the research project and the 2021 version of the survey opens soon. If you think your licensees is as good as or better than last year’s finalists, or if you think its support need work, this is an opportunity to let us know in strict confidence how your licensee has served you over the past year, and how effective it has been as a partner in your advice business and in delivering top-quality advice to clients.

In the 2020 research you told us that satisfaction with overall licensee support had rebounded compared to the previous year. It still had not returned to levels seen in 2018, but it was a move in the right direction. Each of the licensees identified as finalists or winners were rated with well above-average levels of satisfaction by their advisers, across a range of service elements.

Of course, 2020 was a difficult year for everyone, with COVID-19 providing a disruptive overlay on everything else that was already taking place. The 2021 Licensee Research project is expected to reflect how well licensees adapted to support advisers and advice practices in a new way of working and a new way of interacting with clients.

And the industry itself has changed, with institutional licensees less dominant now than in recent years. In addition to our usual analysis based on licensee ownership structure (institutionally branded, institutionally affiliated and independently owned) we’ll also be analysing the 2021 results by the size of the licensee’s parent entity (top tier, large, medium and small). This opens the field to a wider range of licensees to contend for top honours.

The Licensee Research has established itself over several years as the industry standard in taking the temperature of advisers and understanding which licensees are performing best. In addition to underpinning the annual awards, the results of the research are commonly analysed by licensees to understand where their offers can be improved, and what their points of relative strength are.

But the quality of the output depends on the quality of the input, and for that we’re grateful for the widespread support this research receives each year. Keep an eye on your email inbox for your invitation to contribute to the 2021 Licensee Research survey, and to help identify the best licensees in 2021.

CoreData Research

CoreData is a global market research consultancy and unique collaboration of market research, media, industry and marketing professionals.