Wednesday 18 September 2019

Financial firm IFG maps out growth for UK units

UK strategy targets 7pc rise in revenue at James Hay division. Stock image
UK strategy targets 7pc rise in revenue at James Hay division. Stock image
John Mulligan

John Mulligan

FINANCIAL services firm IFG has set ambitious new aims for its UK businesses, targeting 7pc growth in annual revenue at its James Hay division over the next three years and boosting its operating margin from 19pc to 25pc by 2021.

The new strategy comes after what has been a difficult two years for IFG, as it tackled a number of legacy issues at the group, whose activities are solely based in the UK.

The company, whose CEO is Kathryn Purves, had also put its Saunderson House wealth management division up for sale earlier this year, then abandoned that plan. It then overhauled its executive roles. The indecision related to Saunderson House had slowed client wins and client investment decisions. Its James Hay division administers self-invested personal pensions.

At one stage, hundreds of clients of James Hay invested in a company called Elysian Fuels, which was marketed as a biofuels and renewable energy opportunity.

The 500 clients invested a total of £55m (€61.2m) in the business, but the shares in the company were later valued at zero. IFG said James Hay had only acted as pensions administrator on the investment, and did not advise clients on the scheme.

The UK's Revenue and Customs has been probing the scheme and IFG remains in discussion with the authority to address the Elysian Fuels matter. IFG's exposure as a result of the Elysian Fuels fallout could be as high as £20m (€22.2m). Resolution of the matter "remains a priority", said IFG.

Irish Independent

Also in Business