With the IMFA set to go live on 1 June, Field said the current WMA had already “upped the ante” in being a voice on wider issues such as pensions freedoms and the FCA’s Financial Advice Market Review.
She said the merger came from recognition of a “blurring of the edges” in business models from financial advice/planning and wealth management.
“Pensions freedoms have crystallised the thinking from wealth managers, which is how can they offer something to individuals that now suddenly have access to their pension,” she explained.
“Advisers too recognise the advice gap, which has exacerbated some of the thinking that it is not just enough to give advice alone.”
While the merger has been in the planning since late last summer, neither the WMA or APFR is yet to be able to define a target for membership.
“If there are 25,000 financial advisers in the financial services sector, I do not know how many of those work for my firms, and I don’t know how many work for financial adviser firms,” Field added.
“I am hesitant to say it’s ‘x’ because we know there may well be some double counting. Once we merge, we are going to look at the landscape to find out how many financial advisers or planners there are in these different businesses.”