Another year of strong growth

Financial Planning Standards Board Ltd. (FPSB), owner of the international CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® certification programme outside the United States, reported another year of strong growth in 2016, as the FPSB network added 18,435 CFP® professionals and a total number of CFP® professionals rose to 170,101 worldwide. With a net increase of 8,280 CFP® professionals, FPSB and its member organisations, including South Africa, experienced robust annual growth of 5.1%, almost double that of the previous year.

FPSB member organisations who added over 200 CFP® professionals
Of note in 2016 was the considerable growth in the Netherlands. The territory ended the year with 3,649 CFP® professionals through a smartly planned consolidation strategy that merged two organisations to embrace CFP® certification and elevate the financial planning profession as a whole. FPSB’s member organisation in the United States, which boasts the longest running CFP® certification programme, continued its strong showing with a net growth of 3,076 professionals last year. FPSB’s member organisation in Japan, a territory offering CFP® certification for 25 years, had net growth of 389 for a total of 20,683 CFP® professionals at the end of last year.

Within the 26 nonprofit member organisations of FPSB, member organisations in developing markets such as Brazil, Chinese Taipei and Indonesia experienced impressive growth. FPSB’s member organisation in Brazil remains a standout performer for the third year in a row with both solid net growth (615 CFP® professionals) and rate of growth (26.7%). FPSB’s member organisation in Chinese Taipei added a net number of 211 CFP® professionals, for a growth rate of 27.3%, while the CFP® certification body in Indonesia added 164 CFP® professionals for a growth rate of 13.2% over the previous year.

CFP® professionals by territory
Growth; both in terms of adding more CFP® professionals in existing territories and expanding CFP® certification to new territories; is a key focus area for FPSB. The sustained CFP® professional growth year-to-year, along with increased interest in CFP® certification from new territories, greatly supports FPSB’s vision to establish financial planning as a recognised global profession.

To establish financial planning as a recognised global profession, FPSB has set itself an ambitious goal to have 250,000 CFP® professionals in 40 territories by 2025. With a global CFP® professional growth rate of 5.1% last year, the FPSB network has made great progress in increasing the public's access to competent and ethical financial planners, who work in their clients' interest.