Community of female financial experts, Independent Women expands nationwide

Lesley Mackintosh, founder of Independent Women and Partner at Mazars

INDEPENDENT Women, the community of female financial experts, has today announced its expansion nationwide across 6 locations to meet the demand for tailored financial advice in a new era of women’s wealth. With women already holding a substantial amount of the wealth in the UK, female-centric financial advice has never been more important.  Despite this, according to the Financial Conduct Authority just 16% of advisers in the UK are women.

Founded in Edinburgh in 1997 by Lesley Mackintosh, Independent Women celebrated its 26th anniversary this month. Lesley recognised a gap in the market for female- centric advice, particularly that based on lived experience.  Since its formation, Independent Women has worked as a partner to thousands of clients on their personal wealth journey.

In 2022 Independent Women became part of Mazars, the international audit, tax and advisory firm, and is now reaching more women by growing its presence in Mazars’ regional offices. Lesley will continue to lead the business while also holding the role of Partner at Mazars.

Independent Women now has a presence in Mazars offices in major cities across the country with experts including Hina Desai, a partner in in the Nottingham office and Allie Llewellyn who is based in Birmingham. Natalie Wright is a partner in the Leeds office who specialises in planning for female business owners and Jayne Wildish, based in London, who specialises in separation and divorce. Jennifer Massey is also based in London. In Scotland, Lindsey Docherty works alongside Lesley in Edinburgh, with Katherine Diamond based in Glasgow.

Independent Women offers all the services needed for financial success in one place. These include wealth and estate planning, tax and accountancy guidance, cashflow planning and protection. The firm is also experienced in providing investment advice with specialist expertise in ethical investing, which has been a core strength since the beginning.

The firm also collaborates with entrepreneurs and business owners to support their goals and has advised leaders on corporate philanthropy, expansion, and M&A as well as planning for exit. 

Lesley and her team have supported and empowered women through all stages of life including navigating the financial changes that come from starting a family, divorce, inheritance, and retirement. 

Commenting on the national expansion Lesley Mackintosh, founder of Independent Women and Partner at Mazars, said: “I am incredibly proud to announce the national expansion of Independent Women. Since we started out in 1997 a lot has changed for women’s wealth. Nowadays specialist advice for women is not a luxury, it’s an essential. What we often see now are financially savvy women coming to us because they acknowledge the complexity of wealth management and want to work with a safe pair of hands, someone who just gets it.

Women have a significant opportunity to reshape the future through their financial decisions and the movement of wealth. It is exciting for us at Independent Women to play a part in this and unlock opportunities to enable women to achieve their goals.

Our role isn’t just about growing wealth. Over the years it has been just as rewarding to see how financial confidence boosts overall wellbeing. I am delighted to enter our next phase of growth and to have the scale to help many more women across the country to achieve their wealth ambitions.”

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