About Bramwell Brown
Bramwell Brown & Co was bought by Brett Dymond in June 2008, after twenty years under Bruce Bramwell’s management. The business had a slight change in name to Bramwell Brown Limited, and continues to offer broking and investment advisory services.
Brett and Bruce share a similar history, both born and raised in the city, yet both pursuing careers milking cows. Bruce sharemilked in the Waikato, and later farmed on his own account in the Bay of Plenty and Wairarapa. Brett left Dalgety Crown in Palmerston north to milk cows, and he and his wife, Sue, progressed through the uniquely New Zealand dairy farming system of wages, management, and sharemilking. They saved hard for three years for the deposit on a herd of cows and took on their first sharemilking position in 1987. They borrowed money at 15%, and within a year were paying 24%! It seemed tough at the time, but in hindsight it was a great time to enter the industry. Cow prices were low and with inflation at very high levels it was the perfect time to borrow a large sum of money and invest in growth assets. They were Manawatu-Rangitikei Sharemilkers of the Year in 1991 and progressed through two larger sharemilking positions, finishing at Kahutara with 750 cows.
They sold their cows in 2002, after which Brett spent four years studying full-time at Massey University completing a Bachelor of Business Studies in 2006. He was named a Massey Scholar, a distinction awarded to the top five percent of graduates each year. He also completed Graduate Diplomas in Business Studies in Small Business and Personal Financial Planning.
So what does Brett bring to clients of Bramwell Brown Limited? “I think integrity would be at the top of the list. You must put clients’ interests ahead of your own. To me that means matching investors’ needs with products that suit those needs regardless of what it earns me in brokerage or commission. If I think someone should keep their money in the bank, that’s exactly what I’ll tell them. I aim to build long-term relationships with clients, and pushing unsuitable products is never going to achieve that.”
Autonomy would be next. We aren’t salesmen for branded products and we are not limited in the products we can offer investors. Bramwell Brown can access shares both nationally and internationally, bonds, debentures, bank deposits, managed funds, government stock, and KiwiSaver products. We have relationships with brokers in New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom, all of whom provide research and conduct trades on our behalf.
A further advantage to investors is that we are a transaction-based business – clients pay brokerage or commission when they buy or sell securities, but are not expected to pay ongoing fees to hold those securities. In some cases (new issues of shares or bonds) the investor actually pays nothing at all, because we are paid a commission directly from the product provider. Examples include the issues from Rabobank, Fonterra, Auckland City Council, Contact Energy, Fletcher Building, and the BNZ, where our investors gained access to high quality investment grade securities at no cost to themselves. Brett is amazed at the fees some investors are paying to those in the financial planning industry. The majority of these firms have a “funds under management” method of generating revenue. Clients’ money is invested with fund managers and they are charged a variety of management, monitoring, and administration fees, sometimes in excess of two percent per annum. “I believe investors have been poorly served over the years by some financial planners who charge a variety of fees based on the value of funds under management. Reports are computer-generated in a matter of minutes, and rarely does the adviser “earn” the administration and monitoring fees through any overt effort. Fees are charged regardless of the performance of a portfolio, and in many cases, fail to add value to a client’s financial position. I also question the impartiality of some of the investment choices. Does your adviser have unlimited access to investment products or are they limited to their “in-house” branded products?”
Brett also brings practical experience through having his own money invested in the New Zealand and international financial markets. “I know what it’s like to put your hard-earned capital at risk in the markets. I have invested in shares and bonds for over twenty years, and I relied on investments as my sole source of income for five years so I have a very good understanding of risk and return. I’m also a great believer in “value” – essentially that’s what service businesses boil down to. Services are intangible so clients must feel they are receiving value, otherwise they will take their business elsewhere. For Bramwell Brown to thrive it must provide high levels of service at costs that provide investors with value.”
Sue Falloon will most likely be your first point of contact at Bramwell Brown. She has worked here for twenty years, and ensures all the administrative needs of the business are running smoothly. Sue will help you with a wide range of queries including orders, prices, transfers, and the requirements for setting up a new account.