B. Srinivasan, President of Council of Financial Planners talks to Cafemutual about the origins of this association, its activities and its future plans.
When was the group formed? What prompted you to start this group?
Our association was formed in April 2013. Council of Financial Planners is the culmination of a study group of three CFPs. We were a part of the Financial Planning Standards Board of India (FPSB) South Chapter. We observed that financial planning was beginning to generate a lot of interest among IFAs. More IFAs were taking up CFP certification and thus the quest for knowledge started increasing. Thus, the group was formed to act as a common platform for CFPs for knowledge sharing and to engage with fellow practitioners.
What is the objective of your group?
Our aim is to support financial planning movement in India by:
- Creating awareness about financial planning
- Sharing & inculcating the best practices through continuing education with all financial planning practitioners
3) Representing & protecting the interest of all stakeholders in the financial planning profession
How many members does your group have?
Currently we have 75 members. We have a diversified set of professionals who have come together for a common cause and are passionate about financial planning.
How are you reaching out to fellow IFAs/CFPs?
We reach out to fellow IFAs by approaching the members of FPSB India. Besides, we also spread the word about our group through educational service providers and IFA platforms.
Is there any membership fee to join your group?
We charge an annual membership fee of Rs. 2000.
What activities does your group undertake? How often?
We religiously meet every second Wednesday. As part of the continuing professional education one or two members make presentations which adds value to the members skills sets, knowledge and practice.
New members are introduced in these meetings. To make them comfortable, we ask them to share their success story and their professional journey before entering financial planning profession.
What kind of activities has the group undertaken so far?
We have organized many events for the benefit of our members. We invite regulators to explain the implications of new regulations to our members. We also invite other experts like lawyers, CAs, actuaries to get a holistic view of the financial advisory landscape.
Do you interact with AMFI/SEBI on the issues in the mutual fund industry?
We are planning to engage with them more actively.
What kind of support do you get from fund houses?
It is quite heartening to know that fund houses have realized the value and contribution of COFP members. Many fund houses have come forward to support and encourage our quality initiatives.
What are your plans for the group?
Our vision is:
1) Successful collaboration among financial planners
2) Educate and empower consumers