Offshore diversification of wealth in a global universe – Moneyweb
RYK VAN NIEKERK: The Professional Providence Society or PPS, as it’s probably better known, celebrates its 80th birthday this year. It was founded in 1941 and offers a range of insurance, healthcare and investment solutions to 150 000 members, all graduate professionals. PPS also launched the PPS Wealth Advisory Service last year to assist its clients in building and preserving their wealth and leaving a legacy to their loved ones.
Linda Sherlock joins me now. She’s the executive head of PPS Wealth Advisory and Business Development. Linda, thank you so much for joining me. Let’s first talk about the launch of PPS Wealth Advisory. It was launched in February 2020, and 2020 was probably the strangest, most volatile and disruptive year we’ve ever seen. What has the response been since you launched?
LINDA SHERLOCK: Thank you so much, Ryk. It’s been an interesting journey. We obviously, along with hundreds of other businesses, had to pivot very quickly and, being a brand new business, we had to ensure that we kept our north star of creating a wealth business for the PPS stable. We really reached out to our existing members to ensure that they were feeling secure and navigating what at the time was a very torrid market. Then [we] basically took our proposal and value proposition to market as we had already planned, and just [used] a different key by hosting a lot of virtual webinars. This was before people suffered from the webinar fatigue that followed. But we ensured that there was an intimacy and a closeness, both with our existing members and our opportunity-creation with new members throughout the period.
RYK VAN NIEKERK: There are many existing wealth managers in South Africa, and many regard themselves as being boutique wealth managers. But what differentiates PPS Wealth Advisory from these other wealth managers?
LINDA SHERLOCK: I believe that the answer to that lies in the PPS group. PPS follows an ethos of mutuality, which means that we are not a listed company. In fact our members participate in the profits of the business on an annual basis through the solutions that they hold. That is a key differentiator. We also find that with our brand of PPS, as you know and you said earlier on, we work with graduate professionals. So in working in the wealth business with the older graduate professional who is established – we call them an ‘established professional’ – we find that the differentiation is assisted through the mutuality and the profit share that our members do participate in. That is a significant differentiator.
The second one is that everything is bespoke, and privately put together for each individual wealth manager or family.