Putting people first – how Truestar can help you retire from your IFA business

by | Sep 18, 2023

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In this, part two of our three-part series of exclusive interviews with IFA Magazine, Pam Sutherland, Founder of Truestar Talent discusses how her team are well-placed to help financial advisers sell their IFA business and have the option to retire – just one of the core services offered by the group. In part one, Pam gave us the high-level detail of the Truestar range of services offered to IFAs and advice firms. This time, we’re delving into one of those services – the key theme of exit strategies.  

Truestar Talent are a national consultancy, founded in 2015, with Senior Acquisition and Talent Managers working across the UK, specialising both in advisory recruitment and IFA business acquisition. The average experience in the Truestar team is 35+ years, both in advisory financial services roles and financial services recruitment, which is highly unusual. 

In recent years, Pam Sutherland and her team have expanded the offerings that Truestar can deliver and thus, in 2023, a rebrand of the specialist division for IFAs looking to retire and sell, or sell and stay, called Truestar Legacy was launched. 

 
 

Truestar Legacy recognises that many IFAs have put off selling their business, or retiring, due to the pandemic. Additionally, IFAs have also deferred this major decision, as they are sometimes nervous to pull the trigger, or have diaries so full with client meetings, that it feels easier to push back the timeline. The added stress is that there are a lot of buyers out there, so knowing which ones to trust with to look after your clients can be difficult, especially finding the time to do the research on top of the day job. 

The seasoned team at Truestar Legacy are very knowledgeable and warm and friendly, as they support IFAs every step of the way, with honest and informed choices. This team has “been around the block” for many decades now, so they know which companies to recommend and why and do this in a commonsense way. 

Pam and the team’s aim is to be in a situation where Truestar can help with any part of an IFA’s business cycle, from beginning to retiring, whilst maintaining the same quality of research, planning and execution throughout.  

 
 

She said: “Truestar Legacy is a rebrand and, a specialist division of Truestar Talent. Its key focus is in finding the right client homes for IFAs looking either to sell and stay, or to sell and go thus de-risking their retirement. 

“We recognise for an IFA or IFA company who are considering selling their business, or retiring IFAs, that there is a huge emotional connection with their clients and this needs to be both recognised and respected. Truestar Talent’s IFA Acquisition division, Truestar Legacy, understands that these client relationships have been nurtured and developed over many decades, so finding the right new home for them is paramount. 

“We are not a broker; we will introduce you to the right people and we will hold your hand through that process. But we’re not there to sell anything to you. It is very much like the recruitment side for us where we listen to you and find the best fit for you and your clients.  

 
 

“Rebranding this division is a natural progression for us, highlighting that we do have this service as well as the recruitment side. We’ve been dealing with IFAs for so long that it made perfect sense to complete the full cycle from someone starting their career to someone retiring and choosing the right place to trust their legacy to.”  

Pam and the team’s experience with Truestar Talent has created a situation where this specialist division, Truestar Legacy is well-prepared to deal with the market that it has entered into. In the next few years, we know that it is projected that there will be a lot of movement in the IFA world, many IFAs retiring and many smaller IFA companies potentially merging with larger companies, or networks, due to the increased scrutiny and additional levels of compliance being implemented by the FCA. 

Truestar Legacy chooses to work with buyers that they know from a recruitment perspective, who currently and historically retain their IFAs and clients. This ensures that a happy, long-term solution can be found.  

 
 

By leaning on this gained experience and sticking to their mantra of getting the best outcomes, Truestar Legacy can achieve Pam’s main goal of creating a positive impact in the lives of their clients. 

Pam said: “We are here because we want to help. It is about listening and finding out what is needed. Just like an IFA, we start with soft facts and a full fact find, before providing recommendations and research. That doesn’t matter whether it’s acquisition or whether it’s recruitment, the same driving force is there and because we’ve got such strong industry experience and because our view is ‘let us listen to understand you before we try and help you’ it allows us to work in the best possible way for all our clients, for any candidates, and it works very well for those looking to sell their IFA businesses and retire. 

“We recognise that each relationship is both unique and personal and this is why we have created individual microsites showing authentic and honest videos per team member chatting to camera about why and how we can help you. You can find these via the main website. As IFAs are in the people business, just like us, by watching these short videos, you can get a measure of the person that you might want to talk with, prior to that first conversation with us”  

 
 

In all, Truestar Legacy is a ready-made copy of Truestar Talent but with a focus on IFAs who are primarily retiring from their business. This newly rebranded division utilises all the experience and lessons from the recruitment side and applies them to this venture. This makes for a unique situation of a company formed in 2015 which has the capability and experience of a team with 35+ years, on average, in the financial services industry. 

About Truestar Legacy

Having known each other for around 20 years, we work collaboratively as colleagues, sharing best practice. With decades of industry experience, we have long-lasting, meaningful relationships with international companies, national growing companies and niche IFA businesses who offer something different. We have been around a long time and people trust our recommendations. Importantly, we treat you how we would like to be treated ourselves and by really listening and working closely with you, we deliver extensive financial services experience.

 
 

To find out more visit: www.truestartalent.co.uk/meet-the-team/ and for IFAs selling their business visit: www.truestarlegacy.co.uk/why-us  

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