David started Navigator in 2004 with a view to serving needs of a limited number of discerning clients, who valued his expertise, and particularly the confidence in their futures he could provide with proper financial planning.
The stories of some of those clients can be found here; time, space, and confidentiality limit what we can say about them – however, the overriding statement that can be made is that they are an honour and privilege to look after. We take pride in what we do, and in who we do it for.
Navigator was the first fee-based financial planning practice in Northern Ireland, and in the first cohort of Northern Irish firms to be accredited by the IFP. David was also the first Certified Financial Planner (CFP) in the Province and was in the inaugural group of Chartered Financial Planners, all of which demonstrates his extensive technical knowledge, especially in investments and inheritance tax. This commitment to the ongoing development of expertise, service, and experience for clients is still one of our core values – ‘Navigator will always keep looking for better ways.’
Today, there’s a lot more to Navigator than David. Since 2010 the current team has been taking shape, bringing a variety of talent to bear for our clients’ benefit. We take the view that our ‘team effort’, with specialists looking at the component parts of our client service, will always have a much greater impact than relying on generalists. This is the same view that we take with our professional connections, whose support we continue to value.
Although we only trademarked our Personal CFO proposition in January 2015, in reality this is nothing new. We’ve always existed to take care of clients’ financial affairs, letting them as the ‘Chief Executive’ get on with what they do best. Now we explain it better as well.
In Summer 2015, Navigator moved into a new Warrenpoint office, with more private client meeting rooms, more space for the team, and – of course – a beautiful view of Carlingford lough. You’d be very welcome.
Financial planning doesn’t exist in a vacuum – neither should financial planners. We take the view that our clients get a better service, and we have a more rounded view of the world, if we work closely with a network of professionals in related fields.
Clients have told us they want a one-stop shop, but with the best advice. We have developed a network that gives access to technical experts in:
Having one co-ordinated team drastically reduces the hassle involved. Crucially it also allows the people who are the best for the job to be brought in – why keep things in-house when there’s an expert on hand? We don’t pretend to be able to draft wills or do our clients’ tax returns – but we know plenty of people who can.
Good financial planners know their clients’ ongoing needs. Where these have legal and accounting implications, they can be addressed in context, rather than as a mere transaction. A solicitor or accountant is able to do the essentials more easily, deliver more value, and build a better relationship through more interaction as part of the team.
We thoroughly enjoy the sharing of perspectives that comes with working with a solicitor, accountant or other service provider that’s at the top of their game. If you would like to work alongside us, please get in touch. We’d be happy to swap expertise, and make introductions where appropriate.
Navigator is one of the founder members of the Evidence Based Investment Solutions (EBIS) group. EBIS was formed in 2008 by nine people who each run their own high quality independent wealth management boutiques across England, Northern Ireland and Scotland, representing approximately £400 million of funds under management.
The purpose of the group is to put the case for a smarter way of investing – based on evidence from academic research around the world – and to provide a central resource for sharing our investment philosophy with a wider audience.
The investment management business in the UK continues to provide massive increases in wealth. Unfortunately, most of this is transferred from investors’ pockets to those of the fund management industry itself in the form of bonuses, commissions, fees and other expenses. EBIS members have a completely different approach.
In order to provide a good and consistent investment experience it is necessary to apply a structured and disciplined process to the construction of investment portfolios.
This process should consider each asset class and sub-class, examine the evidence for and against holding it, and recommend whether it is likely to add risk-adjusted return to portfolios.
Model portfolios should then be tested for the most appropriate combination of each asset class, using the latest developments in Modern Portfolio Theory. Finally, the funds available in each asset class need to be reviewed against a range of criteria, including cost and how well it fills its brief.
The EBIS investment committee’s role is to identify and present the evidence the group needs to make asset allocation and fund decisions for their clients’ portfolios. Our experience and intellectual capital are combined to produce what we believe are some of the most rigorously researched portfolios available.
EBIS is also an ongoing research and development organisation, meeting regularly to share best practice ideas and processes between our businesses. This co-operation allows us to gain and pass on to clients a more rounded view of Financial Planning than we would be able to as an individual firm.