Newton Aycliffe based Eldon Financial Planning has won The Personal Finance Awards’ UK “Chartered Financial Planning Firm of the Year” 2018/19.
The industry-leading awards were held at London’s O2 Intercontinental Hotel on 22nd November, hosted by broadcaster and writer Clive Anderson. This is the second time that Eldon has picked up the leading Personal Finance Society (PFS) award, having also won in 2011. The PFS are part of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) Group, that received its Royal Charter over a hundred years ago.
Director Gemma Siddle was also celebrating, having reached the final three in the individual UK “Chartered Financial Planner of the Year” category for a second year in a row. A record number of entries for the 14 award categories made this year the most competitive yet.
Eldon was founded in 2002, by three like-minded financial planning experts determined to re-think the traditional model by providing an ongoing, holistic, financial planning service. The Directors went on to gain the highest available CII qualifications and embedded a culture of ‘treating customers fairly’ long before it became mandatory. Passionate about the development of the profession, they achieved Chartered status, and Fellowship of the PFS, in its very first wave.
Since then, Eldon has continued to grow through referral and recommendation by listening closely to their clients and helping them to understand their finances. The Eldon team work with their clients to answer key questions such as when can they retire, is their money in the best place, do they have enough for their future plans, can they make gifts, and can they afford future care? Through Eldon’s years of experience, technical expertise and professional qualifications, the team demonstrate to their clients the benefits of successful financial planning, in turn giving them choices and the ability to confidently deal with life’s inevitable ‘curve balls’. Eldon continues to invest in technology and systems to deliver an efficient, accessible and personalised service, setting out clients’ financial goals and milestones in a highly visual and easy to understand way.
Engrained with its CII pedigree, new colleagues at Eldon, be they Paraplanners or Advisers, all work towards Chartered status. The team can proudly boast that, other than through retirement, no-one has ever left the business. Gemma is a ‘Chartered Champion’ and an active member of the national Financial Planning Panel, and gets involved with local community and charity initiatives as well as promoting the profession to young people through training and work experience. The team also regularly provides financial planning industry insight to local BBC Radio.
To win the award, Eldon went through a rigorous process to satisfy the judging criteria of demonstrating the highest commitment to professionalism, the qualification and development of its people, as well as a highly professional and ethical culture, and a strong commitment to customer care.
The PFS panel said of the winning team: “The judges were impressed by Eldon, a Chartered Financial Planning firm with a unique culture driven by client centricity and commitment to nurturing the talent of the future.”
Reflecting on the win and being up against much larger city-based firms with national reach, Eldon Director, Tony Conner said: “We are absolutely delighted to win this accolade! Our team is hard-working with a strong culture of doing the best for our clients so to have this external recognition and endorsement of the work we do is fantastic.”
Fellow Director, Gemma added: “Eldon has seen many changes since winning this prestigious award in 2011; a founder retiring, development of our service proposition, management moving to the next generation, and doubling the size of our team with each member being developed along an agreed pathway. Undertaking these changes within the firm, whilst still maintaining our leading edge, is a testament to our magnificent team and their dedication in working together to give our clients the best service possible.”