This article appeared in the New Straits Times on 14 Apr 2007, produced here verbatim:
Rockwills: Contribution from trustee unit to rise
By Rupinder Singh
ROCKWILLS International Sdn Bhd expects its revenue to rise 50 per cent this year to RM18 million from RM12 million in 2006, on higher contribution from its trustee unit.
Chief executive officer Saw Leong Aun said trust business accounts for 15 per cent of the group’s business since Rockwills Trustee Bhd was established in January 2006.
Will-writing will, however, continue to contribute the bulk of the group’s revenue this year as it has targeted to write 12,600 wills, up from about 11,000 it wrote last year.
With the increased targets, the company is set to write between 75,000 and 80,000 wills this year since inception.
Saw said the company had written over 65,000 wills to date and of that figure, Rockwills was appointed as the executor to about 30 per cent of those wills.
He said the setting up of its trust division was to diversify its range of future financial planning products, and that it has made Rockwills a leader in estate planning.
“I foresee trust services to contribute more to the group as awareness is growing in tnadem with the affluent society,” said Saw.
Rockwills Trustees general manager Azhar Iskandar Hew said Rockwills aims to be the specialised trust service provider, namely in retail trust which is largely untapped.
Azhar said Rockwills Trustees intends to create more awareness in the retail trust services and plans to launch two more trust products in the third and fourth quarter this year.
Trusts, he said, are being seen as an alternative to will-writing as trusts are disbursed immediately upon the death of an individual to the beneficiaries unlike a will which has to go through the legal system and can take up to 12 months before being disbursed.
Its latest product, UDeclare, is a declaration of trust with a power of attorney and is designed to complement existing wills and living trust services.
With UDeclare, customers have greater control over the trust assets as they will be appointed as main trustee and Rockwills Trustee as the substitute trustee holding the trust assets for the customers’ beneficiaries.
Via UDeclare, Azhar said, customers need not transfer their assets until death, total permanent disability, critical illness, mental disability and resignation as trustee.
Like a living trust, UDeclare prevents delays in allowing its customers beneficiaries to enjoy the trust assets whereby disDeclare clients this year and another 3,000 next year.