Affinia, the TAL-owned dealer group, has established a national proprietors’ advisory council as it charges towards adding 80 new advisers by year’s end.

Around 45 new advisers representing 10 to 12 businesses have joined the risk-specialist dealer group since it opened in February, with a “healthy pipeline” of authorised representatives expected to sign on, said Affinia chief executive Craig Parker.

A seven-person advisory council has also been formed to ensure a close working relationship between management and advisers. The council, which is chaired by Parker, includes Queensland’s Business and Estate Planning Specialists run by principal Troy Edmondson, New South Wales-based MBS Insurance run by principal Kris Mason and Western Australia’s Nexus Life, run by principal Dave Lakey.

“We’re closely targeting professionals who fit in with our family photo. We’re interested in established risk businesses with two-to-three authorised representatives, who are looking to partner with us,” Parker said.

He said advisers were interested in Affinia for many different reasons. Some, such as Edmondson, had decided to hand back their own Australian Financial Services license while others wanted to partner with a specialist risk dealer. Affinia has made a number of key appointments in the last six months, including former AMP risk-research manager Sitparan Gnanendran as national manager of advice in May.

Parker said the group would announce other appointments in coming months.

“Expanding our team is a key part of ensuring we deliver on our value proposition and promote our brand in the industry,” Parker said.

“As a new licensee, it’s important to get our value proposition right and evolve our vision to make sure we recruit the best practices and are the number-one choice for risk professionals.”

Affinia was officially launched on Valentine’s Day this year. Around 40 advisers from TAL’s existing licensee, Pivotal, switched to Affinia. The group currently has 81 authorised representatives in total.