Smart50 Awards 2017

21 Empower Wealth

Revenue

$5.3 million

Growth

159.9%

Founder

Benjamin Kingsley, 46

Head Office

North Melbourne, VIC

Year founded

2007

Employees

37

Industry

Property advisory and financial services

Website

www.empowerwealth.com.au

Winner

Top Marketer Award

After joining a mortgage franchise group in 2004. Empower Wealth founder Benjamin Kingsley says he saw an opportunity to provide a holistic financial advice service specifically to property investors, but his franchisor wasn’t on board with the plan.

So he struck out on his own in 2007 to build what would become a $5 million professional advice business, aiming to take investors through the planning and detail required to generate passive income in retirement.

Ten years on, Kingsley says he’s learned plenty of lessons while building the business, but the biggest challenge is still understanding what motivates staff to create a strong team.

“Early in the development of the business I had some staff whose personal motivation wasn’t strongly aligned with the vision we were trying to create for the business,” he says.

“[It was] the classic case of what’s in it for me, over how I can serve the client and the business better before I serve my own agenda.”

Kingsley reflects that the property advice sector has been plagued in the past by instances of “unprofessional, self-motivated”, advice, and Empower Wealth looked to change this by providing a specialised service.

Thinking about advice for other entrepreneurs, Kingsley says coming up with an idea that you genuinely want to pursue is the key.

“Make sure you are in a business you can get excited about. If it’s just for the money, you ultimately will not be fulfilled by the impact that business makes on the world,” he says.

After ten years based in Melbourne, the Empower Wealth team is soon to be heading up the coast for the first time to open a Sydney office.

Despite having an eye on expansion, Kingsley says there will be no urgency to grow the new office to the same size as the 36-strong North Melbourne offering.

“We won’t rush to build a big team, as we have grown organically and we take the time to induct new people into our culture,” he says.

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