“All compliance is taken care of and the Fortus team are fantastic. The trust we place in them means we can be hands-off and not have to worry." Kevin Hull, Owner, Premier PlusFind out more
Whilst independent financial advisor Premier Plus' day-to-day compliance is taken care of by the Fortus team, our working relationship goes beyond that. There's mutual respect, trust, long-lasting loyalty and definitely no 'bamboozling'.
the potted history
Way back when, Kevin Hull, now owner of Premier Plus Ltd., worked for a men’s clothing company selling suits, shirts and ties.
A customer came in one day, purchased a suit from Kevin and said, “You’re a good salesman, you should come and work for the Pearl Assurance.” (Pearl Assurance was a door-to-door collection service where insurance premiums were collected, as the name suggests, on doorsteps).
An opportunity too good to miss at the time, Kevin joined the company and from there quickly progressed into management. After that, he joined Legal & General as Branch Manager, later took redundancy, then went into a joint business venture which fell apart in 1997.
As the saying goes, things fall apart so better things can fall together.
And so, in 1997, Kevin brought Premier Plus to the market – a team of Independent Financial Advisers based in Cambridgeshire.
Premier Plus currently look after the interests of more than 4,000 people nationwide and the company’s turning over £3.5 million (end of April 2021).
WHAT KEEPS A BUSINESS OWNER UP AT NIGHT?
“Nowadays, I’m lucky in that nothing really keeps me up at night because I’m surrounded by the right people. There are 40 individuals working at Premier Plus today – add wives, husbands and children… that’s a lot of peoples’ homes and livelihoods to be responsible for, so for me, it’s making sure we’re upholding our professional and legal integrity with our clients, as well as fostering a great culture and team ethos.
“In the early days of starting up Premier Plus, I wanted to make sure I could maintain control of the business and manage cashflow effectively – which are challenges for any business owner.
“And then most recently, Covid massively impacted our business, but only positively. We had to think fast for sure, but we adapted. The only challenge for me personally is that I thrive off human connection, so going from face to face to Teams took some getting used to.”
SECRETS TO BUSINESS SUCCESS
“Premier Plus is quite different in that we’ve got 40 people working for us now, and we’ve only ever had 53. Five of our team have worked for us for over 20 years. We’re a real close unit and they’re incredibly loyal.”
What’s the secret to Premier Plus’s success? Recruiting the right people.
“We place a bigger emphasis on finding the right people who ‘gel’ with the team and the ethos of the business, not necessarily how much experience and expertise they have.
We’ve seen our partners and colleagues’ children grow up and supported our clients through some pretty big life milestones too. It sounds cliché but our business is built on relationships. We don’t offer anything our clients can’t get elsewhere, but what they won’t get elsewhere is the personal level of service we provide.”
TRUST IS EVERYTHING
“Before she joined Fortus, Emma Queen was a client of mine. This was over 10 years ago when she was a trainee accountant looking for personal finance advice and she trusted me with her family affairs.
“A few years later when Emma joined Fortus, she reached out to have a chat and she couldn’t have timed it better. We’d fallen out with our then accountancy firm and needed urgent advice. Fortus were there at the right time, and we haven’t looked back since.
“All our compliance is taken care of and the Fortus team are fantastic. The trust we place in them means we can be hands-off and not have to worry – we just know they’re cracking on with all our taxation requirements.”
out with the jargon
“What I find with Fortus is you can have a ‘grown-up’ conversation and know your questions will never be considered stupid. Most accountants I’ve spoken with have a kind of sharp tone and you feel as though what you say is incriminating. You never get that with anyone I’ve met at Fortus – I always get a sensible and genuine response to any question I have.
“I AM NEVER BAMBOOZLED BY THE FORTUS TEAM.”
PREMIER PLUS LTD
“When my clients come to see me, they come in, sit down and we talk. Afterwards, you can physically see their shoulders dropping – everyone leaves feeling comfortable, with a clear understanding. I get the exact same feeling when I sit down with the Fortus team.
“I appreciate what they [Fortus] do is way beyond my understanding, but I always feel I understand enough when I leave the meeting. People want to overcomplicate things and tell you how clever they are when all you want is for someone to explain the technicalities in a simple way. Fortus communicate with confidence but are by no means egotistical.”
a fruitful future with fortus
“We have a large client base and many of them use accountants or need to find an accountant and/or business advisor. At Premier Plus we introduce our clients to Fortus on a weekly basis and likewise, Fortus refers the business owners they work with to us. We have a mutual confidence in one another’s’ abilities to keep our respective clients happy and bring added value wherever we can.”
When asked, ‘What does the future look like for Premier Plus and Fortus?’ Kevin said…
“I see our partnership continuing to blossom long into the future.”
Kevin Hull Premier Plus