The Financial Index Journey

Financial Index Wealth Accountants (FIWA) is one of Australia's leading providers of wealth, accounting, estate planning and risk protection advisory services. Our mission is to provide high quality solutions to help guide our clients on a successful financial journey in an increasingly complex world.

From small beginnings as a boutique financial planning firm to one of Australia's largest non-bank financial advisory businesses, our story is worth telling. Share a few of the key moments of our journey below.

1987
1994
2000
2008
2013
2014
2015
1987

The Financial Index idea is born

After coming together from working elsewhere in the financial services industry, brothers Spiro and Terry Paule decided to set about building their own financial advice business - the result of which is the consolidated Financial Index group. From this arose a vision to create a business which offered an index of financial services, giving clients ways to achieve their goals more efficiently by procuring all that they needed at one place thereby saving money and time.

Financial Index have become passionate about building a business around key behaviours of consistency, communication and innovation - believing that by strictly adhering to this ideology is the only way to produce the best possible results for our clients.

1994

Creation of ISO 9001 certified systems and process

The year 1994 marks the beginning of this never-ending journey to stay committed to building world-best systems and process to serve the complexities of doing business in an increasingly competitive and fast evolving digital era. In order to conduct its work as efficiently as possible, and because there was nothing around the financial services space that filled that void, Financial Index went about developing its unique, proprietary software platform to manage quality controlled business outcomes.

This tool has become an essential ingredient in its success. It ensures that all personnel, Client Care - Advisers - Management, work in the one place the same way. It keeps everyone’s work agenda tightly organised, super-efficient and continuously compliant with all legislative and quality demands set by the business. FIWA’s process has been consistently certified with the highest internationally recognised quality standard, ISO 9001. Though this certification may be commonly found in the industrial sector, it is rare in professional services simply because people reliant processes rarely achieve industrial quality reliability. As testament to its unique success in building industrial strength professional services, FIWA is the only financial services operator of any scale to carry this certification in the Australian market.

2000

Formation of broader Financial Index group

Financial Index as it’s known today. It was established in 2001 as a result of a merger of 3 small businesses with a view to collectively offering high quality advice solutions using reliable process to support a fee for service advice based culture. Its immediate success enabled Financial Index to re-invest its profits in buying up other businesses to integrate into this model. In the past 10 years FIWA has acquired 45 businesses which have integrated into the Financial Index business model. These acquisitions have allowed Financial Index to acquire a strong national presence with offices in most major cities and some regional centres around Australia.

2008

Key Institutional stake confirms Financial Index is investment grade

Macquarie Bank acquired a 50% stake of Financial Index in January 2008 confirming that the consolidation and process engineering conducted by the business in prior years had made it an investment grade organisation appropriate for Institutional investment. Macquarie brought additional capital resources, Boardroom input and additional corporate rigour to furthering Financial Index’s corporate objectives. Greater investment in process, systems and management resources allowed further acquisitions to become more significant. This included Civic Financial Planning, Nevett Ford Financial Services and Finovia amongst many others. Accounting started to become a core discipline to round out wealth, estate planning and risk protection advisory.

Unfortunately, the GFC saw a divergence of strategic goals between Financial Index and Macquarie prompting a mutually agreed sale and buy-back of the Macquarie stake by Financial Index in 2012. Macquarie left the enduring legacy of a strong business set for further growth.

2013

Financial Index Australia Pty Ltd rebrands as 'Financial Index Wealth Accountants'

Amongst the increasing complexity and compliance, Financial Index sets out an agenda to ‘bring it together‘, melding the disciplines of wealth management, accountancy and protection services in order to offer more value to our clients whilst saving them time and money. Over the years, all of these services were formerly offered and controlled by accountants only to see them fragment to niche providers like financial planners. This inevitably led to duplication of costs, loyalty divisions and greater time demands upon clients. Recent legislative reforms mandating fee for service arrangements has largely eliminated conflicts of interest meaning that an integrated service will provide more quality and efficiency at a more competitive fee structure.

2014

Centric Wealth joins FIWA in Findex Group stable of brands

In early 2014, leading wealth management firm, Centric Wealth was acquired by Financial Index Wealth Accountants (FIWA).

This partnership has positioned the consolidated group as Australia’s largest, privately owned financial advice business, with approximately $8 billion in client funds under management at the time.

The combination of the two businesses has played a key role in helping FIWA attain a market leading position, and heightens the ability to achieve our mission of providing the highest quality financial service solutions. As a top-tier wealth management firm, Centric Wealth shares the same focus on the provision of best of breed advice, and the strategic alliance with both FIWA and the broader group only further strengthens the Group's expertise, holistic approach to financial solutions and ability to deliver exceptional client experience.

2015

Crowe Horwath Australasia joins FIWA in Findex Group stable of brands

January 2015 marked a significant milestone for Financial Index with the acquisition of Crowe Horwath Australasia.

As the largest and most geographically diverse accounting and financial advisory group in Australasia, Crowe Horwath is a leader in providing accounting and financial services to Small to Medium Enterprise (SME) owners and entrepreneurs. As such, the business model demonstrates excellent synergies with the services provided by the existing brands and businesses in the broader Findex Group.

Sharing the same commitment to the provision of high quality advice, FIWA and Crowe Horwath hold the inherent values of delivering ‘best of breed’, holistic financial solutions, and are, through their strategic alliance, ultimately setting a new paradigm in the financial service industry.