Bob Massey - B.Sc Dip P.F.S TEP
Bob Massey began his career as a financial consultant with Legal and General Financial Consultancy Services in January 1983 advising in all product areas for the company in personal and corporate finance. Encouraged by the company to become involved with the training and development of other advisers he became the youngest ever Branch Manager and then Executive Sales Manager in the company, looking after a team of 60 advisers along with managers and staff in Birmingham, whilst retaining contact with his own clients.
Bob had been involved in the advice and sales under the old Capital Transfer tax systems for tax mitigation, not least the PETA plans developed by Chris Marshall LLB. Bob became quite specialist and primarily offered Estate Planning advice under the Inheritance Tax legislation from 1986 to high net worth clients.
In 1995 Bob recognised that the type of clientele he advised warranted independent advice. Bob then became a founder shareholder and director of a Birmingham based IFA that grew to become the largest independently owned IFA in the country, advising across the Midlands, to North London and South Wales by 2001.
As the Sales Director, Bob was responsible for identifying market initiatives for groups of specialist advisers to exploit and advising on their development. The company had some of the most productive advisers and one of the highest averages in the industry.
Bob himself qualified under the Advanced Financial Planning Certificates, firstly in Taxation and Trusts in 1995, and then further into Advanced areas of Pensions & Investment planning. The business was sold to a National IFA early in 2003, allowing Bob to start a new company focused almost entirely on his preferred specialist area of Estate Planning.
Clive Ponder - B.Sc (Hons) C. Eng F.I.M.M.M TEP
Clive Ponder graduated from Nottingham University in 1974 with a 1st class Honours degree in Mining Engineering. He then joined the National Coal Board on their Graduate Training scheme. Clive progressed through the line management ranks and became a Colliery General Manager in 1986. At the age of 36, Clive was appointed as General Manager of Markham Colliery in Derbyshire. Markham Colliery was the largest colliery combine in the country with over 5000 employees, 550 staff of which 53 were Chartered Engineers and a turnover in excess of £120 million pounds. The process and man management skills developed are transferable to any industry.
After leaving the Mining Industry Clive wanted a completely different challenge and joined a company taking instructions for wills and associated documents.
Over fifteen years ago Clive set up his own company taking instructions for and processing wills and associated documents for his own clients.
As well as his own work Clive was approached by a number of national organisations to train their staff and process all of their documentation. From this period Clive’s company has written tens of thousands of client wills and maintain these in secure storage.
In October 2003 Bob and Clive went into partnership and set up the companies which comprise the Countrywide Group of Companies in order to improve the services offered to clients by combining the skills of the two professions, Will Writing and Estate Planning as used by the Financial Services Industry.
Along with the Legal services and Trustees service of Countrywide Tax and Trusts Corporation Ltd and the investment services of Countrywide Estate Planning (i.f.a.), the group provides advice at the leading edge of the Estate Planning Industry, based on firmly tried and tested legislation and principles.
The Directors, whilst fully conversant with the administration and taxation of Trusts, are in fact both qualified to STEP diploma level in these subjects and have been accepted as a Trust and Estate Practitioner (TEP) by the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP). STEP is the premier Society for professionals working in the area of Wills, Trusts and Taxation both nationally and internationally.
Specialising in Wealth Protection strategies, Countrywide provide support and advice to a vast number of Independent Financial Advisors, Financial Advisors and Mortgage Brokers, Solicitors and Accountants across the UK, as well as those not having the specialist knowledge in Trusts for Inheritance Tax and long term care mitigation, protection against divorce, creditors and taxation and investment strategy of those Trusts.