Smith & Williamson profits climb 14% over last six months

OPERATING PROFITS have leapt at Smith & Williamson over the last six months, according to its latest interim statement.

The top ten firm saw profits climb 14% for the six months to 31 October 2014, while revenues climbed 6% to £103.3m. Profits grew evenly across it management and banking, and tax and business services divisions.

David Cobb (pictured), co-chief executive, said the firm was in a “unique position” to provide a mix of private client and business services, including investment management.

The firm is “cautious” about the short-term outlook for the UK economy, due to persistently challenging economic conditions in Europe, but developments in its markets point to positive news for the firm. “…We believe that changes in the financial services environment help to create opportunities for us,” said Cobb.

“For example, the internationalisation of clients coupled with the importance of the UK and London as a global centre, developments in pensions and the impact of RDR on the wealth management sector – all point to change and hence opportunities.”

Funds under management rose 4% to £15.3bn, while better market conditions helped the performance in tax and business services.

The firm posted £199m in fee income for the year ending 30 April 2014, up 7% on the previous year, according to the Accountancy Age Top 50+50 survey of firms.

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