SPAA’s chief executive has strongly denied the association’s name change signals a shift in focus and strategic direction, despite industry speculation and concerns to the contrary.
The SMSF Professionals’ Association of Australia (SPAA) announced yesterday it is changing its name to The SMSF Association (SMSFA).
At the time of the announcement, chief executive of SMSFA Andrea Slattery said the change in name represents the association’s “all-embracing” place in the SMSF sector.
"It's critical that the organisation has a name that reflects the importance of the SMSF sector and the breadth of its membership,” she said.
Despite speculation these comments are suggestive of and represent a broader shift in corporate direction for the association, Ms Slattery stressed to SMSF Adviser there is no change to SMSFA’s strategic plan.
“There is no mischief in this, it’s just an evolution and a way in which people can actually intuitively find specialists and intuitively find an association to represent them,” Ms Slattery said.
Sources close to the association suggested to SMSF Adviser that SMSFA would also be looking to target SMSF trustees as part of the re-brand.
When asked if trustees would be targeted by SMSFA moving forward, Ms Slattery said “there is no change to what we’ve always done”.
“We do not have trustee members,” she said. “We have always represented the industry, we have always represented every community in the sector at an advocacy level [and] at every level, but our memberships are the professionals.”
At the moment, SMSFA’s planned projects involve expanding opportunities for professionals to be involved in the SMSF sector, Ms Slattery said, with more details on one particular project involving young professionals to be announced next week.
One SMSFA member via LinkedIn also suggested the re-brand may have been a “captain’s pick,” that is, members were not consulted prior to the change.
While not all members were consulted, Ms Slattery said SMSFA did some research through its membership base and the broader community.
“When our research went to the community, the community said… with SPAA, we think of hot tubs,” she said.
Ms Slattery is confident the re-brand will assist SMSFA in linking potential trustee clients with its membership base, given the new name is “more intuitive” for consumers.
See SMSF Adviser's Q&A with Andrea Slattery tomorrow for more details on the association's re-brand and future plans.
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