The directors present their report and financial statements for the year ended 31 October 2019.
The principal activity of the Group continued to be that of independent financial advisers and investment managers.
Results and dividends
The consolidated statement of comprehensive income for the year is set out on page 31.
The amount that the directors recommend should be paid out by way of dividends has been disclosed in the Strategic Report on page 4.
The Group continues to focus on organic growth and the integration of its acquisitions to drive revenue and profitability.
The Group continues to invest in its digital footprint technology including to improve the service to both clients and AFH advisers whilst enabling greater efficiency in its administration. Digitalisation of both the advice and investment service is also expected to open new market channels to future clients who embrace digital and mobile technology.
The following directors have held office since 1 November 2018:
Mr A Hudson
Mr J Wheatley
Mr P Wright
Mrs S Lewis
Mr M Chambers
Mr A Broad
Mrs A Larvin
Full disclosure of information
Each of the Directors at the time of this report confirm that so far as they are aware, there is no relevant audit information of which the company’s auditor is unaware and he / she has taken all appropriate steps to make himself / herself aware of any relevant audit information and to establish that the company’s auditor is aware of that information.
The company has made qualifying third party indemnity provisions for the benefit of its directors which were made during the year and remain in force at the date of this report.
Evaluating Board Performance
At the current stage of the Group’s development, assessment of the Board’s performance and that of its committees is undertaken by the Board as a whole, led by the Company’s Chairman. Although the Company has no formal procedure for measuring the effectiveness of the Board, the Board will be carefully reviewing its effectiveness and the need to refresh its membership by reference to financial performance, adherence to budgets and the overall growth of the Group and taking account of the opinions and insights of its auditors, Nominated Adviser, broker, legal and other advisers. The method of assessing Board effectiveness and performance will be reviewed on a continuing basis.
Matters covered in the Strategic Report and Financial Statements
As permitted by paragraph 1A of schedule 7 to the Large and Medium Sized Companies and Groups (Accounts and Reports) Regulations 2008 certain matters which are required to be disclosed in the Directors Report have been omitted as they are included in the Strategic Report on pages 14-17 and in notes 23 and 24 of the Financial Statements. These matters relate to principal risks and uncertainties which have been disclosed in the Strategic Report, Financial Risk Management which has been disclosed in note 22, and Events subsequent to the Statement of Financial Position which has been disclosed in note 24.
Corporate Governance Statement
The Corporate Governance Statement is published on our external website.
The Group gives full consideration to applications for employment from disabled persons where the candidate’s particular aptitudes and abilities are consistent with adequately meeting the requirements of the job. Opportunities are available to disabled employees for training, career development and promotion.
Where existing employees become disabled, it is the Company’s policy to provide continuing employment wherever practicable in the same or an alternative position and to provide appropriate training to achieve this aim.
The Group involves employees in the running of the business through a strategic board and senior management team that works closely with management and staff members.
Employees are involved in an Employee forum where they can contribute ideas towards ways to improve the business, staff benefits and the working environment.
In line with government legislations the Group offers a group wide pension scheme, where staff have the option to opt out if they wish.
On the 17 July 2019, Saffery Champness LLP were appointed as auditors of the Group and its Subsidiaries replacing the previous auditors Mazars LLP.
A resolution proposing that Saffery Champness LLP be reappointed as auditors of the Group and its Subsidiaries will be put to the members at the Annual General Meeting.
Directors’ responsibilities statement
The directors are responsible for preparing the Strategic Report, Directors’ Report and the financial statements in accordance with applicable law and regulations.
Company law requires the directors to prepare financial statements for each financial year. Under that law the directors have elected to prepare the financial statements in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (“IFRS”) as adopted by the European Union and applicable law. Under company law the directors must not approve the financial statements unless they are satisfied that they give a true and fair view of the state of affairs of the company and of the profit or loss of the company for that period.
In preparing these financial statements, the directors are required to:
- select suitable accounting policies and then apply them consistently;
- make judgments and accounting estimates that are reasonable and prudent;
- state whether IFRS as adopted by the European Union have been followed subject to any material departures disclosed and explained in the financial statements;
- provide additional disclosures when compliance with specific requirements in IFRS is insufficient to enable users to understand the impact of particular transactions, other events and conditions on the entity’s financial position and financial performance; and
- prepare the financial statements on the going concern basis unless it is inappropriate to presume that the company will continue in business.
The directors are responsible for keeping adequate accounting records that are sufficient to show and explain the company’s transactions and disclose with reasonable accuracy at any time the financial position of the company and enable them to ensure that the financial statements comply with the Companies Act 2006. They are also responsible for safeguarding the assets of the company and hence for taking reasonable steps for the prevention and detection of fraud and other irregularities.
On behalf of the board.
17 January 2020
We have audited the financial statements of AFH Financial Group Plc for the year ended 31 October 2019 which comprise the Consolidated Statement of Comprehensive Income, the Consolidated Statement of Financial Position, the Company Statement of Financial Position, the Consolidated and Company Statements of Changes in Equity, the Consolidated Statement of Cash Flows and notes to the financial statements, including a summary of significant accounting policies. The financial reporting framework that has been applied in their preparation is applicable law and International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) as adopted by the European Union.
In our opinion:
- the financial statements give a true and fair view of the state of the Group’s and of the Company’s affairs as at 31 October 2019 and of the Group’s profit for the period then ended;
- the Group financial statements have been properly prepared in accordance with IFRSs as adopted by the European Union; and
- the Company financial statements have been properly prepared in accordance with United Kingdom Generally Accepted Accounting Practice including Financial Reporting Standard 101; and
- the financial statements have been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the Companies Act 2006.
Basis for opinion
We conducted our audit in accordance with International Standards on Auditing (UK) (ISAs (UK)) and applicable law. Our responsibilities under those standards are further described in the Auditor’s responsibilities for the audit of the financial statements section of our report. We are independent of the company in accordance with the ethical requirements that are relevant to our audit of the financial statements in the UK, including the FRC’s Ethical Standard as applied to SME listed entities, and we have fulfilled our other ethical responsibilities in accordance with these requirements. We believe that the audit evidence we have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our opinion.
Conclusions relating to going concern
We have nothing to report in respect of the following matters in relation to which the ISAs (UK) require us to report to you where:
- the directors’ use of the going concern basis of accounting in the preparation of the financial statements is not appropriate; or
- the directors have not disclosed in the financial statements any identified material uncertainties that may cast significant doubt about the company’s ability to continue to adopt the going concern basis of accounting for a period of at least twelve months from the date when the financial statements are authorised for issue.
Key audit matters
Key audit matters are those matters that, in our professional judgement, were of most significance in our audit of the financial statements of the current period and include the most significant assessed risks of material misstatement (whether or not due to fraud) we identified, including those which had the greatest effect on: the overall audit strategy, the allocation of resources in the audit; and directing the efforts of the engagement team. These matters were addressed in the context of our audit of the financial statement as a whole, and in forming our opinion thereon, and we do not provide a separate opinion on these matters.
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