Changing The Game

Luthuli Capital is doing things differently

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Since Trudy Luthuli , along with her husband Mduduzi, founded Luthuli Capital in 2016, the firm has gone from strength to strength in a tremendously competitive market. We chatted to Luthuli to find out more about her path.

“I was introduced to the industry in 2010 as an Employee Benefits Consultant to Trustees of Retirement Funds at Alexander Forbes Consultants & Actuaries,” says Luthuli. Finding that the “fast-paced, perfection-driven environment” demanded technical knowledge of the industry and legislation, she completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Financial Planning Law in 2011, going on to join the Financial Planning Institute of Southern Africa in 2012. “Since then, I have been growing and learning within the profession with passion. While the perception of the profession may not be where it should be yet, I am positive that with ongoing changes in legislation and economy, financial planning will become more professional and technical, requiring those who are passionate and intentional about the role to remain and continue providing professional services to the public.”

For Luthuli and her partner, professionalism and ethics are innate and a prerequisite for any financial advisory business. “When we started the business,” says Luthuli, “we had a clear understanding, which we continue to pursue, that of superior professionalism, integrity and ethics. Our approach is integrated into every point of contact with our clients and stakeholders.”

Not only does Luthuli Capital have systems and measures in place to ensure compliance requirements are met, but the Luthuli’s “personally strive to be better through continuous personal development”.

The founding idea of Luthuli Capital was to create a new way of doing things within the industry: “Intertwined with our comprehensive estate planning, risk and investment management solutions is financial literacy on an ongoing basis. For instance, Capital Notes consists of daily financial tips shared with clients in the mornings. Clients enjoy them as they are short and easy to read, with a clear message which adds value to their knowledge and understanding of finances, the economy or markets,” Luthuli explains.

Financial literacy at the fore

As a co-founder, Luthuli has a distinctly client-centric approach to the estate planning and risk management division of the business. “I enjoy helping clients with ensuring they have a clear understanding of why they have a will, an estate plan and risk solutions that aim to ensure that the quality of life is not compromised in the event of an illness, disability or death,” shares Luthuli.

A determined champion of financial literacy, Luthuli has taken to blogging as a platform to spread the message. “As soon as I decided that I wanted to impact women’s financial planning, I quickly realised I had to face real-life questions that lead directly to financial literacy,” she says. “I then had to consider blogging as a platform of communication, to address these topics. Women face many challenges which are specific to them, and there are not enough voices in the industry addressing them. Blogging allows me to share valuable insights without being restricted by the FAIS Act.”

With cohabitation and divorce on the rise, women lead many households. An industry study found that 41% of households are led by single women – this then highlights the importance of financial planning for women as they are vital pillars of many families. We need to ensure that there is someone in the industry who is sensitive to that, especially because at this stage, there is much effort needed with little reward. It will take time and patience to see the impact of our efforts.

For Luthuli herself, juggling roles as business partner, blogger, mother of two and postgraduate student is a constant challenge.

“Accepting that there is no balance between the different roles has been my biggest challenge yet,” she says. “I had to decide that I can only juggle them as I go along. While the demands are different, I  take each of them quite seriously.

“I have had to be brutal in how I split my day, allowing myself to fulfil each role when it can or needs to be done. I am a business partner at the office, but at home, I am strictly a wife and mother. I have two princess toddlers who run the house into loud chaos when they are home from school. I try to squeeze in some studying during ‘dark time’ when the family is asleep, either early morning or late in the evening,” she concludes

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