AIA New Zealand’s CEO, Nick Stanhope, says:
“A recent survey found that half of all those surveyed said that COVID-19 was impacting their job security and that over 40 percent worry about money at least weekly. The survey also found that confidence in making financial decisions had reduced.”
“New Zealand’s financial advice firms are primarily small businesses employing fewer than five members of staff. Financial advisers play a crucial role in increasing the financial resilience of New Zealand households which is now more important than ever. Because of this we wanted to do our bit to support financial advisers and customers at this time, in line with our purpose of Making a Difference in people’s lives,” says Nick.
AIA New Zealand’s Chief Partnership Insurance Officer, Sam Tremethick, says:
“We pride ourselves in being there for when our customers and their families need us. Last year we paid out $476 million in claims, but we can’t do it alone. Financial advice is more important than ever, however advisers have told us that they themselves are finding these times challenging.”
“We hope that the two support packages announced today will go some way towards cushioning the effects of these difficult times on the financial advice sector,” concludes Sam.
AIA Vitality Community and Business Grant Programme
This programme provides a total of $500,000 of grant funding for financial advisers. Through a competitive application process, financial advisers will be able to apply for a grant designed to help their business make a difference to customers, their families and wider community. The programme has been designed to encourage advisers to develop, design and implement initiatives to support community wellness and to raise awareness of the importance of health and wellbeing to overall financial resilience. More details, including on how to apply and the application criteria will be released to financial advisers in due course.
Small Business Support Package
Responding to feedback from the financial advice sector that the single biggest concern for financial advisers at this time is short-term cashflow to keep businesses afloat, from 2 June to 1 September 2020 commission rates for insurance applications received by financial advisers through eApp, AIA New Zealand’s electronic application form system, will attract higher commission rates. The increased remuneration for financial advice businesses is being introduced on a short-term basis only to provide increased support to ensure the resilience of financial advice firms to enable them to continue to support New Zealanders during these challenging times.