PIMS talks attract profession

Three dozen law firms are to attend leading financial services conference PIMS aboard the cruise ship QE2 next month, following a concerted drive to try and improve legal sector attendance by conference organisers.

The conference, which will run from 6 to 9 June , aims to bring together representatives from key product providers and

independent advisers in the sector.

But top industry regulators are also scheduled to talk about pressing developments in the regulatory area, while Alistair Darling MP, Opposition spokesman on the City and financial services, will also speak on the future for IFAs under any future Labour administration.

Project director Julian Gorst says it is the first year that the conference organisers have

attempted to attract a significant number of representatives from law firms.

"Certainly this year we have made more of an effort to identify and contact people from a legal background," he comments.

"We are keen to bring together all sectors of independent financial advice, and if the legal professional is keen to move into the area, we can give its members an opportunity to meet leading product providers in the UK."

In total 36 law firms have signed themselves up for the conference.

Among those attending is Iain Nicholson, director of the Association of Solicitor Investment Managers and head of Newcastle-upon-Tyne firm Iain Nicholson & Co.

According to Nicholson, the increase in the numbers of solicitors attending PIMS for the first time marks the growing interest that law firms have in growing their financial services business as well as a growing interest from product providers in reaching members of the

profession.

He adds: "We do a lot of

private client work, and clients like us to be dealing with as wide a range of product providers as possible. It's very important that solicitors are fully aware of the range of investments and product providers, while product providers obviously want to give their side of the story.

"The conference should provide a useful two-way street."

Mick Kavanagh