Key Retirement invests for adviser growth

5th October, 2017 - 1:19pm
  • Will Hale promoted to CEO as Key targets 200-plus advisers in 2018

Key Retirement has promoted Will Hale to CEO as it launches a recruitment drive aimed at taking its total equity release adviser numbers to more than 200 across the UK through next year.

It is actively recruiting advisers as part of major expansion plans across the market-leading equity release advice arm including significant investment in training through its Key Academy initiative aimed at bringing new advisers into the market and developing existing staff.

Will Hale, who joined Key Retirement Group in 2014 as Business Development Director, has been promoted to CEO of Key Retirement to spearhead the expansion plans which also include increased investment in technology to help engage and educate customers through enhanced online journeys as well as increase adviser productivity through integrating proprietary sourcing systems with lender and solicitor platforms.

Key is launching the recruitment and investment drive following its £208 million acquisition by global private markets investment manager Partners Group as it builds for continuing growth in the equity release market.

Equity release lending grew by 33% as plan sales rose by 44% in the first half of the year and analysts estimate the market will break the £5 billion barrier by 2021 which would be more than double the £2.1 billion lent in 2016.

Key’s plans to support the market expansion include strengthening partnerships with major banks and building societies aimed at providing solutions for customers facing interest-only mortgage shortfalls and supporting introducers across the wealth and mortgage intermediary sectors refer customers who they identify need specialist equity release advice.

Simon Thompson, CEO of Key Retirement Group, said: “Expert independent advice is central to the expansion of the equity release market as it grows to meet customer demand and we are committed to supporting the growth as the market leader.

“The acquisition by Partners Group is enabling us to increase investment and Will’s expertise and experience makes him the ideal candidate to lead the expansion of the advice arm.”

Will Hale, CEO Key Retirement added: “Increasing advice capacity is crucial as Key grows in response to the strong customer demand for equity release. The adviser recruitment will include adding significant numbers to our telephone team as well as adding more face-to-face advisers to align with anticipated regional trends in demand.

“I look forward to continuing to work closely with our corporate and intermediary referral partners and building on Key’s long track record of success in delivering consistently excellent service to an ever more diverse set of customers requiring specialist retirement lending advice.”

Will Hale joined Key from specialist annuity provider Partnership, where he was Director of Corporate Partnerships. Previously he has performed senior sales and proposition development roles focused on the at and in retirement market including as Commercial Leader for Genworth’s European Retirement and Protection business and as Head of Distribution at Lincoln Financial Group.

Key Retirement Group received formal regulatory approval for its £208 million acquisition by Partners Group last month the sale by previous owners Phoenix Equity Partners. Its companies include the UK’s leading equity release adviser, Key Retirement, as well as lender more2life, and referral service Key Partnerships.

Notes to Editors

About Key Retirement

Founded in 1998 Key Retirement is the leading specialist provider of financial solutions to the over 55’s. Key Retirement’s head office is located at Key Retirement, Baines House, Midgery Court, Pittman Way, Fulwood, Preston, PR2 9ZH.