John Nantes is the newly appointed Chief Executive Officer at stockbroking and financial advisory firm Prescott Securities.
Can you tell us about your career and how it led to CEO at Prescott Securities?
I started in the financial services industry more than 16 years ago working my way up to senior executive positions in Bank SA (where I headed the bank’s financial planning division in Adelaide), Colonial and St George Bank. I joined listed national financial services group WHK in 2009 where I held the position as its Chief Executive Officer for Eastern Victoria.
Prescott Securities is a wholly owned subsidiary of WHK Group and in my view the jewel in the crown of the national group. I was leaving an obstetrician’s appointment in Melbourne with my wife Hayley back in October when I was offered the position as Prescott Securities’ new Chief Executive Officer. It’s perfect timing now for our expanded family to move back to Adelaide.
Briefly, what does your role involve?
I view my role as CEO as setting and driving the vision for Prescott Securities. My mandate is to grow what is a great business with an outstanding reputation. I will be working closely with our dynamic team of advisers and staff to deliver on an ambitious national growth plan while maintaining our high level of services to existing clients and business partners.
What are the most rewarding aspects of your job?
Working with advisers who are among the best in the industry on a national scale to build and protect wealth for our clients. As part of this I particularly enjoy seeing young and dynamic people build their careers in our organisation and reach their full potential. As well as the people side to our business, I enjoy seeing our leading advice and strategic initiatives enhance the financial well being of our clients as they achieve their goals now and into the future.
What have been the highlights of your career to date?
My appointment as CEO of Prescott Securities would have to rank as the highlight to date. I feel very privileged to be taking over the reins of a firm that already holds the position as Adelaide’s pre-eminent advisory and stockbroking firm with the industry’s most talented advisers. It’s particularly exciting to be charged with a mandate to grow this exceptional business even further.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
With the arrival of our second daughter Olive in October, spare time is not a concept I’m really familiar with at the moment. I am really enjoying spending time with Olive and seeing our three-year-old daughter Aria interact with her. If I can squeeze in some personal time, it usually involves running or basketball.
What is your growth strategy for Prescott Securities?
Over the coming years I will be looking to help steer significant expansion in South Australia and interstate through further development of our people, expertise, product and advice innovation. We will also be looking for new business opportunities both organically and by way of acquisition. Initially we are looking to build on our strengths in South Australia as well as growing our operations on the Gold Coast, Melbourne and in Darwin. We are also looking to expand our insurance and estate planning solutions to provide additional benefits to clients.
Are you moving to Adelaide purely for work reasons?
Our move from Melbourne to Adelaide is for work and lifestyle reasons. It’s very important to Hayley and me that we bring up our children in a very family-friendly environment – and we see that in Adelaide. We’ve both worked and lived here before so we’re very excited about moving back.
At 35 years of age, you are one of the younger CEOs in SA – is your age a hurdle in some respects?
Not at all. I’ve managed to build up a lot of experience in my 16 years within the financial services industry and always worked and managed colleagues both younger and older than me. The financial services industry is changing rapidly and Prescott Securities is a dynamic and modern firm that’s at the forefront of this change. The experience, expertise, energy and passion we have right across the firm keeps us ahead of the game in the face of the current challenging economic conditions impacting us all.
Where are the markets headed?
Financial markets are currently facing a high level of volatility, particularly from global influences. Australia on the other hand appears to be in quite a strong position and so navigating through global issues influencing our local economy is very important.
With Adelaide’s leading economist Darryl Gobbett, our national investment committee and research team led by Jeremy McPhail and our 30-strong advisory staff, we are well placed to help clients move through these current times. Investors are seeking investments that can generate stable cash flow. By identifying them and employing our own advice model, we are aligning our clients’ true needs to what the possibilities are.
How is Prescott Securities working with businesses?
Attracting and retaining quality staff is a key challenge for any business but becoming an employer of choice requires thinking outside the square. We have designed a tailored Corporate Services Package to ensure employers can provide the exact benefits employees value most.
These services can either be tailored to suit an individual staff member’s specific circumstances right through to the provision of Group Insurance cover for the majority of a firm’s workforce. We also support any ‘In house’ training and
seminars for staff. These services are highly valued by both the employer and the employees.
What should business owners be doing about their own finances right now?
Given the current global financial situation business owners would be wise to review and re-forecast their own personal finance position. The targets, cash flow needs and timeframes originally identified some time ago may have
changed dramatically and this will require a re-think of personal investment strategies.
Insurance and estate planning requirements should also be considered in this review. Prescott Securities can assist business owners in all these areas.