A united voice for the profession

AFA and FPA proposed merger

The AFA and FPA are exploring a potential merger of the two associations.

We are now opening a consultation period for members, before the proposal goes to a vote (expected to be in mid-November). On this page, you can find more information about the proposal, and how to provide feedback.

AFA National President, Sam Perera and AFA CEO, Philip Anderson, are holding five member consultation sessions across the country in October. 

Why are the AFA and FPA considering a merger?

Both boards believe there are substantial benefits for their respective members from a merger, providing a united voice and stronger advocacy for financial planners and advisers.

Effective advocacy is consistently the number one priority for members of both associations. The AFA and FPA have worked closely together in recent years in advocacy, making joint submissions in many policy areas. A merger of the FPA and AFA would create a single association which would speak for the profession.  We believe we are better together. 

By creating a single unified voice, we add clarity and power to the positions we take, and avoid duplication of activity.  It increases the likelihood that crucial advocacy positions would be achieved.

Why now?

Recently the AFA and FPA have worked closely together in advocacy, making joint submissions in many areas of policy, running a joint life taskforce, and both being members of the Joint Associations Working Group. We’ve found this approach has been very well-received by members and has helped get positive results in several areas.

Recently, both associations have been frequently approached by membership, specifically suggesting we should merge.

A merger is the logical next step in combining the resources of both in order to ensure a united voice and stronger advocacy for financial planners and advisers.  This is consistently the number one priority for members of both associations and a merger of the AFA and FPA  would create a single association which would speak for the profession.

What are the benefits of a merger of the AFA and FPA?

Advocacy

Education

Community

Events

Professional Standards

Member Support Services

A stronger unified voice for financial planners and advisers supports our advocacy goals.

Access to a wider range of resources, clarity on designations and more resources for CPD.

More ways for members to engage with each other and with their association to receive the support they need.

More scale, frequency and resourcing.

Supported through greater resourcing.

More scale and resources to deliver greater services to members.

What are the timings? When would the new association actually form?

We are aiming for members to be in a position to vote on the proposal before the end of the calendar year.  If members vote in favour of the proposal then the transition would formally commence from 1 January 2023 with an aim to complete by 30 June 2023.

What will the new association be called and what will it look like?

No decision has been made on the name of the new association, however both boards agree that a new name and branding, reflecting the new entity, would be appropriate to honour the heritage of both associations.

It is proposed that the merged association would have a single national (not federated) transitional board of 12 directors, made up of 8 directors from the FPA board, and 4 appointed from the AFA board. For future director election cycles, eligible members of both associations would be entitled to stand for election. After the three-year transition period, the board would reduce to 9.

It is proposed that Sarah Abood would become the CEO of the merged association, while Phil Anderson would become General Manager, Transition, overseeing the transition and transformation.  David Sharpe would be chair of the new board, and the AFA board would nominate the deputy chair.

What happens next?

Before we take any further steps, we are seeking feedback from our members on the proposal.

You are invited to attend a webinar for AFA members on Thursday 8 September, to hear more details on the proposal from President Sam Perera and CEO Phil Anderson.  There will also be the opportunity to ask questions.  You can register for the webinar here and provide questions in advance by emailing merger@afa.asn.au.

Timeline

21-23 September 2022 – AFA Conference Thrive

Our Conference will include a panel session on the merger proposal, and the boards of both associations will be in attendance. It also has an exciting and valuable program of speakers and sessions and offers a great networking opportunity.

Late September 2022 – Combined member webinar

On a date in late September, to be confirmed, AFA and FPA members will be invited to join a joint member webinar, hosted by FPA and AFA board members. The webinar will include further information on the potential merger as well as provide an opportunity for members to ask questions of both boards.

Mid-late October 2022 – Merger proposal finalised

The merger proposal will be finalised and documents will be sent to all members via email.

Mid-late October 2022 – Voting opens

Voting will be opened to all eligible voting members.

Mid-late November 2022 – Voting closes and outcome announced

The results from the vote will be finalised, most likely at our AGM. We expect this will be a hybrid event to maximise members’ opportunities to attend. For the proposal to succeed, 75% of members who vote will need to vote in favour.

23-24 November 2022 FPA Congress

AFA members are invited to attend the FPA’s annual Congress at member rates. This is a great opportunity to experience excellent relevant content and network with colleagues, as well as board members and decision makers from both associations.

How will the vote work?

Members will be asked to vote following a period of consultation.  More details on the voting process and timing will be provided in due course but we anticipate it will take place before the end of the calendar year.

What will be the official designation?

The boards have proposed that the CFP designation would be the primary designation going forward.  The FChFP and the ChLP designations which have previously been offered by the AFA, would continue to be recognised and supported, although not available to new applicants.

How will the membership structure work?

A merged association would have a new constitution, terms, membership regulations and categories.  There is overlap with many of the existing membership categories for both associations.  Where there is no clear equivalent the member will be guided to the membership category that is the best fit.

Further questions

If you have any further questions please provide in advance of the member webinar by emailing merger@afa.asn.au.