Champion will take up the new role and oversee the corporate and representative role of the academy, working specifically with LLA ambassadors to continue to build and deliver the accredited training and support programme to advisers.
He will also represent the academy at a senior level with all stakeholders and also promote its focused and specialised services to more senior consumers.
Champion comes has worked in the financial services industry for over 40 years; he is a chartered insurer, being a fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute and an Associate of the Pensions Management Institute.
Through his career he has also fulfilled a number of technical, marketing and product development roles with Commercial Union, CGU and Norwich Union (prior to becoming Aviva), Mercer HR Consulting and, most recently, Old Mutual.
He is a director of the Investment and Life Assurance Group (ILAG) having served as its chairman for the year 2013/14. He has also served on the ABI, Society of Pension Professionals, TISA and UK Platform Group committees and represented them in discussions with FCA, HM Treasury, HMRC and DWP.
LLA was launched in 2014 and offers later life advisers across product areas such as equity release, long-term care, and annuities, with access to training and sales support. At the same time it is developing commercial opportunities for members through its relationships with product ambassadors.
Stuart Wilson, managing partner of the Later Life Academy, said: “We are very pleased to announce Bob’s appointment as he joins the Academy at a very exciting time. Throughout 2015 the LLA has become the ‘go to’ organisation for those professionals dealing with consumers who are either approaching, or in, retirement.
“It is testament to the strength of our proposition that we have been able to attract someone like Bob who comes with an extensive industry track record, as well as a belief in, and commitment to, the later life marketplace. With his broad knowledge of the multiple steps of good retirement planning in the UK, we are certain Bob will be a huge asset to our rapidly-growing team.”
Champion added: “I was introduced to Stuart shortly before he launched the Academy and it surprised me that, despite coming from different areas of the financial services industry, we both identified the need for holistic retirement income solutions.
“I am passionate about delivering holistic retirement income solutions for those individuals whose pension savings alone are insufficient to provide a realistic retirement income, plus I am also dedicated to improving financial capability within this demographic.
“To that end, this new position with the Academy is, to my mind, a perfect match and I am very much looking forward to working with Stuart, the LLA team, and our members, to bring our combined vision to a reality for the benefit of individuals, advisers and providers.”