AN INDEPENDENT financial adviser firm, Executive Benefit Services (UK) Ltd, has completed a management buyout with backing from Allied Irish Bank (GB).

The Lanark-based firm manages over £200 million of wealth and specialises in retirement and inheritance tax planning for its predominantly owner-managed UK client base.

Val Barr, Chartered Financial Planner and Managing Director of EBS (UK) Ltd, initiated the buyout process in late 2016, and secured £1m of financial backing.

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With the buyout now complete, Val intends to capitalise on the expertise of her all-female employees.

Val Barr said: “Female managing directors are rare in financial services, as are all-female employee teams. It did strike me that the relationship manager at Allied Irish Bank (GB) who oversaw our transaction was also a woman, Libby Clark.

“The tide is turning in Scotland’s financial services.

“Since the buyout, we’ve made substantial behind-the-scenes changes at EBS (UK) Ltd.

“As well as streamlining and improving our internal systems and processes, we’re making changes that benefit the whole team and improve our culture – we’ve created a lunchroom, given everyone their birthdays off and implemented informal flexible working.

“We want to make this the best work environment possible.

“We’re recruiting for two posts, an administrator and a financial adviser, and are targeting steady growth over the next four years,” she added.