The Inside Adviser comments on the Group’s strategy and outlook in this article:
“The moves made by Complii across 2023 should position the firm well for a rebound in advice industry numbers, which is entirely foreseeable given the proposals stemming from the government’s Quality of Advice review”.
Compliance service provider Complii faced some serious headwinds in 2023, as its core user base of financial advisers was further whittled down to under 16,000. Yet the listed company with ambitions to be a full service compliance solution provider is primed for an industry rebound after a couple of timely market moves that should combine well with the industry’s resurgence.
Complii, whose platform is used by stockbrokers and advisers to help automate the compliance obligations needed to fulfill and protect their AFSL regulatory and obligations, originally made a splash back in September 2021 when the web-based provider bought private-company trading platform PrimaryMarkets as a complementary business. PrimaryMarkets operates a secondary market on which securities of unlisted companies can be traded.
In 2023, Complii continued its strategically acquisitive streak with the purchase of consultancy provider MIntegrity in a move Complii chairman Craig Mason said he hoped would “open the door” to further business opportunities. The move broadened Complii’s revenue base and gave it access to a new tranche of clients, while adding value for its broker clients and providing significant cross-promotional potential through MIntegrity’s RegsWeb and MIWize services.
On a recent investor call Complii executive chairman Craig Mason expanded on the MIntegrity purchase and the opportunities it presents.
“This was an important step forward in the growth and development of our business as we go forward as we look to become the backbone of the capital markets in Australia,” Mason said. “We’re very excited… it’s been a fantastic acquisition for us and the team have integrated beautifully into our business… MIntegrity was very strong with some of the major clients we weren’t exposed to and has the capability to deliver major solutions.”
The MIntegrity deal came at a crucial time for Complii, given the industry headwinds faced during the year. Mason revealed that the business was quick to right-size, cutting staff by 20 per cent and reducing the annual cost base for the business by more than $1 million. “We haven’t been sitting on our hands in response to market conditions and how we manage the financials,” he said.
A real boost for the company came when it strategic “partnership agreement” with investment platform provider Praemium. Partnering with Praemium is a “quantifiable step forward in who we are as a business,” Mason said.
The collective moves made by Complii should position the firm well for a rebound in the advice industry, which is entirely foreseeable given the proposals stemming from the government’s Quality of Advice review.
“We’ve refocused our business around the questions…: How do we cross sell? How do we grow our revenue line? How do we help our customers grow their revenue line?” Mason said. “The focus has always been on putting ourselves forward as a new asset class in the financial services space.”
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