We are a local company of Independent Financial Advisers (IFAs) based in Inverness and Glasgow who pride ourselves on fair, transparent and professional advice. The roots of the business are firmly embedded in the Highlands and it has evolved from its original history as a small brokerage established in 1990. It has gone through a number of changes over the last few years, with the most notable involving a change to Ltd company status in 2009 and a more recent merger in 2016 with Advanced Retirement Planning to create the new firm. We have a very loyal group of clients and professional connections and work largely on a referral basis. We charge a combination of fees and commission for the work we conduct on behalf of clients.
Advanced Investment & Retirement Planning have individual and corporate clients located across the length and breadth of the UK as well as a number of ex-pats primarily working globally in the oil and gas industry. In order to provide our clients with a complete service we work in tandem with an extensive list of lawyers and accountants in the UK, to provide additional services for our clients in all areas of legal and specialist tax work which we are unable to provide specific advice on.
The business has two main advisers who are also Directors, namely Ross Smith and Ferrier Pryde. Ross has been involved in financial services for the last 23 years having previously worked at Standard Life, Scottish Widows, Friends Provident and Positive Solutions. He is level 4 qualified after completing the Institute of Financial Services Diploma for Financial Advisers in May 2011. He is currently studying towards becoming a Chartered Financial Planner which should be completed in 2019.
Ferrier Pryde works out of the Glasgow office but travels the UK extensively, he has been involved in financial services for over 27 years since starting out with Standard Life in one of their Actuarial Departments. Since then he has worked for Aegon, Spence & Partners/Dalriada Trustees - who are one of the largest independent Actuarial and Pension Trustee consultancies in the UK, and a large IFA practice in Glasgow. He is level 4 qualified and a pension specialist including having extensive knowledge of defined benefit pension schemes. Ferrier also has a high degree of knowledge in both PAYE, personal and corporate tax and inheritance tax planning.
Ross and Ferrier also have a Co-Director in Jim Smith. He is the Principal of Advanced Financial Planning which is a separate successful financial practice in Inverurie. Jim is also Level 4 qualified and is a founding member of the Institute of Financial Planning. He originally trained as a Chartered Accountant and has a BA (Hons) in Accounting from the University of Strathclyde Business School.
Stephanie joined us in November 2013, before which she studied for four years at Glasgow Caledonian University to get her BA (Hons) in Finance, Investment and Risk Management. Since joining Advanced Investment & Retirement Planning she has been partaking in numerous training courses and has recently passed her level 4 Diploma in Financial Services. Stephanie has recently qualified as a mortgage advisor and is now responsible for dealing with the majority of mortgage enquiries received.
We have two experienced Paraplanners, namely Mike Ford who has been with us now for a few years, and Ashley Alderson who started in January 2019. Mike and Ashley have worked in financial services roles for many years and bring a wealth of knowledge from appointments previously at Scottish Widows, HSBC and another local IFA practice. Mike’s main responsibilities are to provide support, assistance and research to Ross, with Ashley providing a similar service to Ferrier.
We also have Diane MacLeod working alongside us as the Office Manager and Shirley Baker who provides administrative assistance to everyone although Stephanie is now trying to slowly utilise Shirley’s skills more for her own Mortgage work!
Finally, we have Barney who is the official office couch warmer. Barney can be found most days sleeping in Ross’s office and is a well-known part of the team to many existing clients.
* Tax planning is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
The Office Couch Warmer