About us

We specialise in helping financial service business owners buy, sell and grow through M&A and consulting services.

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Gary Wills

Wills Financial Planning

Business sale

I had heard Steve talk at a seminar about the sale of FP practices. I had kept the information on Steve in a file and made contact with him when I was ready to sell. I found Steve to be very professional, ethical and diligent. After providing him with the detailed information he requested, he then proceeded with the sale process. I was expecting this to take 18 month to 2 years. Within a few weeks Steve had a number of ASX listed companies and advisers whom were interested in purchasing my asset. The Sale documents were signed on 6 months later
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Mark Euvrard

Libertas

Business Sale

Forte’s focus at all time is on the client outcomes or in my case the advisers we looked after. The decision making is a large part on culture and then on the commercial aspects of the transaction. It is not easy to sell your business but it gives great comfort to work with professionals who have networks, processes and understand the marketplace intimately.
Our Story
Our Team

Steve Prendeville

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Steve Prendeville

I am the company founder and director of Forte Asset Solutions Pty Ltd (Forte). Forte’s core activity is selling financial services businesses.

I have enjoyed a successful 30 plus year career in financial services. I began my career in New Zealand, then England working first in banking and then in stock broking. In 1987, I became Australia’s youngest certified investment planner (ACIP). My roles included client advice and subsequently senior management.

I established the Dealer Group National Mutual Financial Planning in Victoria in 1991.

I joined First State Funds Management in 1993 and presided over Victoria’s growth from $40 million pa inward flow of funds to more than $1 billion pa.

I then accepted a global partnership in Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, where I held the position Partner and Director and CEO of Deloitte Financial Services (DFS), a national High Net Worth dealer group. After re-engineering the business, I completed the successful sale of DFS in 2001, managing the transition until late 2002.

After a 12- month sabbatical I came back to the industry and created Australia’s first specialist financial services M & A group Kenyon Prendeville. I co-founded Kenyon Prendeville in 2003. Kenyon Prendeville was the first M&A business specialising in financial services and it went on to be the predominant broker until 2011. I split the partnership in May 2011 to create Forte Asset Solutions Pty Ltd.

Over the last 16 years’ experience, to the best of my knowledge, I believe I have facilitated more than 150 Financial Planning business sales in Australia.

Forte has a database of 6,300 contacts of buyers/seller and Centre’s Of Influence. On a mass mail- out the amount of emails opened ranges from 800-1500, and the number of actions taken from the mailout is approximately 30%.

I am an active media commentator and public speaker on all issues affecting financial services businesses, especially financial planning businesses and Dealer groups.

I have been published in the Industries leading publication IFA approx. 9 times in 2019, AFR 2 /3 times. Was published 3 times in 2019 Professional Planner. In Dec 2019 annual review achieved top 10 quotes of the year in. Also published Jan 2020 in Professional Planner.

In the last few years I have been a speaker at the following conferences – AIOFP international conference in Shanghai 2015, AIOFP 2017 Tokyo, AIOFP 2018, New York and Washington and speaker at the AIOFP National Conferences since 2004 (speaker at the national conference for the last 15 years), Independent Financial Advisers Strategy Day 2014/15/17/19, AMP Distribution team 2019, IFA Master fund Conference 2015/2016/2017, Boutique Association Conference 2105/2016/2018, FPA National Congress 2016/2018, AFA National Conference 2017 and many others.

Stephen Southwood

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Stephen Southwood

Traditionally, licensees have also paid a recruitment fee or referral fee for planning businesses that successfully transition to them. Such business practices (fees), in Forte’s view, are at the discretion of the Licensee and in the event Forte is eligible for such a fee, it is rebated to the planning firm against the fees Forte has been engaged for.

Stephen Southwood has more than 30 years invested in the Financial Services Industry continuing a family participation going back 3 generations.

Stephen started his career in 1987 and has developed a wide network and deep understanding of the financial planning industry through his experiences as a financial planner, practice owner, dealer services consultant, structured product distribution, management and practice development. His experience has been gained in start-ups, multi adviser businesses and the likes of AMP, BT/Westpac, Macquarie and Lonsdale.

This extensive background in financial services has given Stephen a unique insight into the importance to match practice business plans and culture to the appropriate Licensee. A strong believer in “One Size does not fit all”, Stephen notes that dealer choice can have a significant impact on your business’s success. Despite what appears to be some common value propositions across all dealers, often overlooked by many is the cultural fit and similar collaborative businesses sharing experiences and a collective vision of best practice.

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