David Bloomer began his “insurance” career in 1936, much influenced by T Ferrie Young, the Manager of the Glasgow Branch of Scottish Widows Fund who was something of a legend in the business in the city. Bloomer joined up with Bill Keir to form William Keir Bloomer and Company.
Their development was limited by the outbreak of war and Bloomer served in the Merchant Navy. After the war, Bloomer used his connections with Jim Leslie, one of his badminton partners to obtain introductions to possible clients in Aberdeen, selling purchased annuities which were used to fund premiums on whole of life insurance policies written under trust as a means of mitigating Estate Duty. He was very successful and one particular connection with J A Ross, Managing Director of Crombie Mills in Aberdeen proved to be very important.
Ross was a lay member of the Court of Aberdeen University and persuaded the University to instruct D L Bloomer and Partners to carry out a review of the pension arrangements for the non-academic staff at the University. This resulted in the establishment of a new final salary pension scheme and brought about introductions to several members of the academic staff who were members of their scheme FSSU. This was a money purchase scheme based on the purchase of with profit insurance policies and conferred the unusual option of taking all benefits in cash. For many people this then involved the purchase of investments or annuities to provide an income. The firm’s University connection was then extended to the University of St Andrews and in 1966 to the University of Dundee and remained in place for around 50 years.
Around 1948 Bloomer and Keir were joined by Bill Colquhoun who worked on the life assurance side of the business and in the early 1950’s Bloomer and Colquhoun established their own separate partnership called D L Bloomer and Partners. Colquhoun concentrated on individual business and specialised in advice to the medical profession. The firm created an early 100% mortgage scheme using the Huddersfield and Bradford Building Society for 90% of the loan with a further top-up from the Clerical Medical and General Insurance Company whose reward was a non-profit endowment policy for the whole amount, then the most profitable business for any Insurance Company. The scheme was much appreciated by the young doctors who used it and who became long standing clients of the firm. New offices at 127 St Vincent Street were acquired.
In 1966 Craig Reedie joined as an assistant. A qualified Lawyer, Reedie developed both the individual and pensions business of the firm, particularly with the introduction of early-retirement schemes at Universities as a means of cutting employment costs. Bloomer retired in the early 1980’s and Keith Muir joined the firm from a previous broking career. Muir expanded the firms’ knowledge of more direct investment products and formed a new partnership with Reedie when Colquhoun retired in 1989. Throughout his time with the firm, Reedie was allowed generous latitude to engage in his sports administration interests, particularly in the Olympic world, for which he was Knighted in 2005.
After a couple of years experience with Sun Life Assurance Jeremy Hart joined the firm in 1992 and developed the business following the retirements of both Reedie and Muir in 2002/03 including the purchase of Kenneth Ross IFAs Limited from Ken Ross in 2008. This added scale and followed considerable investment in the firm’s back office and administrative resource and capabilities. Hart went on to incorporate the business in 2012.
Throughout the last eight decades or so those engaged in the practice of advising the firm’s clients on matters financial, have concentrated on providing independent, unbiased and professional advice to their clients in many different walks of life and have received many expressions of grateful thanks.