First NZ Capital (FNZC) has squeaked into the discretionary investment management service (DIMS) regime just in time for the November 30 cut-off point.
In a release, FNZC chief, Scott St John, said the group was granted its licence last week, joining other major stock-broking brands Forsyth Barr and Craigs Investment Partners in the DIMS club.
FNZC is the third-largest stockbroking group in NZ with Craigs and Forsyth Barr occupying the number one and two spots respectively by number of advisers.
As at press-time the Financial Markets Authority (FMA) had yet to update its DIMS list to include FNZC with the two remaining reasonably-sized broker groups – Macquarie and JB Were – also yet to appear.
Prior to any potential updates, the offical DIMS list included18 financial advisory businesses (a handful have multiple licences for associated entities), nine fund managers or trustee firms, six banks (including related funds management businesses), and two stockbrokers – according to an earlier analysis.
Without a DIMS licence in place by December 1 this year, financial services entities will not be able to run discretionary portfolios for their clients, which is the stock-and-trade of most broking firms.
According to the FNZC statement, the DIMS licence enables the group to keep offering discretionary “bespoke portfolios” tailored to the individual needs of clients.
In the statement, St John said gaining the licence “reflects FNZC’s strong corporate governance and compliance, our robust investment process and our operational capability”.
“We believe that this DIMS license will provide our clients with further confidence that their money is being managed to best practice standards,” he said.
FNZC manages “a substantial balance” in its AssetWatch custodial platform, the statement says.
The firm also upgraded its technology platforms to meet the new DIMS reporting requirements.