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International Women in Wealth five minute interview: Sylvia Cooper Wealth Adviser, Towry

Date: 02 Dec 2011

Citywealth

What signature taxation, laws, trusts or investments do you think really work for uhnw clients and why?

There is no quick answer to this question as every client has different requirements and circumstances. I would however say that every client should always maximise their ISA allowances each tax year and also their pension contributions where possible, plus not to forget to utilise their tax allowances. We should also continually review our Inheritance tax position and make gifts within the allowance again were possible. I find it amazing how many High net worth clients I initially see that do not have a “Will” it is a must for everyone.

Are women really going to take over the world?

We will never take over the world, in my opinion, but we will always continue to strive to make a difference. The world will be better place when we have more input.

What size of client do you generally work with?

From £250,000 to £3,000,000. The overall wealth value of the individuals is usually considerably higher than the invested assets we manage.

What is the most interesting private client deal you have ever been involved with?

Working with Camelot and National lottery winners.

What lessons have you learned that you could share with women?

The Finance industry is a thoroughly rewarding industry to work in. We have a “softer” approach than our male colleagues and in the world of RDR should mean we are better placed to provide a service than to “sell”.

What initiatives do you have or do you think there should be for women?

I personally do not think we should be treated any different from our male colleagues but I would say in the end “quality shines through.”

Do you think the British government should legislate to bring women on boards?

I think Women should be invited to board meetings even if the current director position is not available. They have a different approach to solutions.

What are your three USP’s for working with uhnw clients?

Confirm my status as a “Chartered Financial Planner”. I have been in the industry for over 25years dealing with “client problems and solutions”. I work for a highly professional employer.

What is the best thing that has ever been said about you?

Achieving firstly my qualification of Associate of the Chartered Insurance Institute (ACII) all those years ago and secondly achieving “Chartered Status.”

How much do you travel on business and where do you tend to go?

My office is based in Birmingham and so I generally deal with clients in the Midlands.

What is the next big thing in private wealth?
RDR

What would you tell a divorcing woman in the UK?

I would tell her to ensure that she receives professional fee based advice. She should review all her financial options and provisions and it is paramount that she also asks her adviser to provide a “cash flow analysis” of her future financial provisions. This will then determine if based on the divorce settlement, that she will have sufficient funds and provisions for her future financial stability.

What charities do you admire and why?

Cancer research.

What is the dummies guide to making it to the top in finance or pwm?

Just be professional and enjoy your job as every day provides a new challenge and experience.

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