Ken Davy is no stranger to the highs and lows of business. He sold his first company, DBS Management, for a cool £75m. With Simplybiz, his second company aimed at IFAs, he is now battling through some very tricky times in the financial services sector. But with sales having increased from £2.7m to £10.7m over four years, and profits of £4.5m last year, he seems in good shape to tackle what may come. The company, founded in 2002, provides compliance and business support to more than 5,000 IFAs throughout the country. “We are maintaining our membership and anticipate it will increase. Turnover will probably also increase,” is Davy’s quietly optimistic prediction. Simplybiz has launched the New Model Business Academy, a not-for-profit enterprise focusing on the professional development of member firms, which 2,500 advisers have already signed up to in less than a year. The venture has proved particularly well-timed given recent regulatory changes and the current need for financial discipline, although Davy maintains that the Academy was borne out of his philosophy that companies must continually evolve: “We’ve enhanced existing services or created new ones every year. Change is a constant. If you don’t change you are on a road to nowhere,” he says.
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