We understand that our accounting and wealth businesses, together with their business partners need high quality support.
Unique to Easton is the support services provided through our wholly owned companies Knowledge Shop, Merit Wealth & Hayes Knight Referral Services. Each of these entities provides support services to either accounting or wealth businesses. They have developed a track record in providing focused and targeted business support.
Easton accounting and wealth businesses access the practice support and distribution capability of our wholly owned businesses ~ Knowledge Shop and Merit Wealth
Merit Wealth and its related entity, Hayes Knight Referral Services (HKRS) were established in 2009 to provide financial services solutions for accounting firms.
Merit Wealth and HKRS are each owned 100% by Easton.
Merit Wealth holds an Australian Financial Services License (AFSL) and offers accounting firms the option of providing in-house advice through a qualified adviser authorised by Merit Wealth or under a referral service initiated and managed by HKRS in conjunction with Merit Wealth.
Under its referral service, HKRS sources and engages qualified financial advisers who understand the accounting market and who are capable of building a significant financial planning business.
Each adviser enters into a Referral Rights Agreement with HKRS which involves an up-front payment by the adviser plus an on-going annuity fee. In return for these fees, HKRS introduces the financial adviser to accounting firms and facilitates an on-going referral arrangement between the parties.
All advisers operating under the referral service are authorised by Merit Wealth, which provides full dealer services for a standard fee of 10% of annual revenue.
Advisers provide a broad range of advice, including a strong focus on SMSFs, succession planning, risk and investment advice.
Knowledge Shop was established in 2000 to provide professional support services to small to medium accounting firms.
The Company is owned 100% by Easton.
It operates a subscription based service, allowing “member” firms to access a range of support services and material, including:
An on-line knowledge bank of electronic precedents, workpapers and checklists
A technical support help desk
Professional development training
Quarterly technical and client newsletters
The Knowledge Shop subscriber base has grown consistently since its inception and services more than 700 member firms across Australia.
Typically, subscribers are 1 to 4 partner accounting firms with a focus on SME (small to medium enterprise) and HNW (high net worth) clients.
In addition, Knowledge Shop deals with another 800 to 900 accounting practices annually on an ad-hoc or transactional basis, mainly through training programs offered nationally on a rolling basis.
The Knowledge Shop training programs are tailored to cover contemporary and emerging industry issues.
With approximately 9,000 accounting firms operating in Australia, the growth potential of Knowledge Shop over coming years is significant.
This position is underpinned by Knowledge Shop’s competitive advantage in terms of its:
Existing operations, including a large customer base and on-line help desk
Existing infrastructure, including precedent files and an on-line knowledge bank which are supported by purpose designed, internal IT software and applications relating to information management and distribution
Understanding of the market
Ability to design practice-based content, rather than theory-based content
Ability to anticipate market trends and innovate ahead of the curve.