Advisor Profile: Paul Nicol
Paul Nicol is the Managing Partner and a Senior Financial Planner at GFM Wealth Advisory.
Paul joined GFM in 1999 fresh out of University. During his early years of employment, Paul worked closely with the founder of GFM, Tony Gilham to manage the financial requirements of existing clients of the firm. Today, Paul is now the Managing Partner at GFM and in 2017-2023 was ranked as one of Australia’s top 100 Financial Advisers as published by ‘The Australian’ newspaper in conjunction with the respected U.S. financial publication ‘Barron’s’.
Through a combination of managing client’s financial affairs and additional study, Paul has developed specialist expertise in the areas of Self-Managed Superannuation Funds (SMSF), retirement planning, investment markets and portfolio construction. Paul is a Financial Planner AFP® member of the Financial Advice Association Australia (FAAA) and an SMSF Association SMSF Specialist Advisor.
As the Managing Partner of GFM, Paul has been instrumental in a number of significant developments at GFM.
In 2003, GFM made a significant decision in applying for its own Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL). Currently, in Australia, over 95% of Financial Planning firms are wholly or partly owned by banks, large fund managers or other financial institutions. The implication of GFM having its own AFSL is that we have no financial institution, bank or fund manager that dictates which investments we recommend or how clients are invested. GFM is 100% owned by staff, and Paul is the majority shareholder in GFM.
In 2013, GFM acquired accounting firm P. Gruchy and Associates, which has since been renamed GFM Gruchy Accounting. The acquisition has been critical for GFM as it allows an offering of not only comprehensive financial advice but also high-quality accounting solutions.
During this period, GFM moved its business model to specialise in Self-Managed Superannuation Funds. Although GFM has operated and managed SMSFs on behalf of clients since 1999, its significant growth is largely attributed to GFM’s concentration on managing SMSFs over the last fifteen years. Today, the vast majority of GFM’s client base is SMSF clients. The SMSF service offering is a complete “end to end” offering including SMSF set-up, administration, compliance, ongoing investment advice and accounting.
In addition to managing many of our firms highly valued clients, Paul is also responsible for the day to day running of the business and is a member of our Investment Committee. He is extremely passionate about his role as a financial planner and takes great pride in the long-standing and loyal relationships he has developed with many clients.
Paul is a member of the GFM Investment Committee, which meets monthly to research, select and monitor all the investments on the GFM Approved Investment List. Importantly, GFM has a strong philosophy of direct investing.
Paul is married to Lisa and has two children. He is an avid supporter of the Sydney Swans in the AFL and enjoys following the English Premier League soccer and the Melbourne Storm. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with family and friends and plays social tennis.