Awards and Achievements

Kennedy Black Wealth Management is a pioneering, award-winning independent financial planning and wealth management firm, based in London, established in response to growing changes in the market for regulated financial advice. It is clear that in the past there have been several inherent conflicts of interest within the advisory profession - even among so-called ‘independent’ advisers. Kennedy Black prides itself on going further, putting the client's interests at the heart of everything we do. We go beyond the Code of Ethics required by Chartered Financial Planning firms and voluntarily adhere to the US 'Fiduciary' Standard recently endorsed by President Obama.

At the time of writing, Kennedy Black Wealth Management is one of only 683 Chartered Financial Planning firms across the UK according to the Chartered Insurance Institute.

As part of a wider network, Kennedy Black has the support of pi financial, a highly experienced firm established in 1991, with around 100 advisers and a strong support staff. pi financial has been shortlisted three times in recent years by Money Marketing at their Financial Services Awards (in 2010, 2012 and 2015).

Ben Smaje

Ben Smaje
Managing Director and Founder
Chartered Financial Planner
LLB (Hons)
Cert CII (MP)

Ben is a Chartered Financial Planner

Ben Smaje is Managing Director and founder of Kennedy Black Wealth Management.  He has been advising clients on their personal wealth since 2009 and has been working in the City since 2000.  He is a Chartered Financial Planner.

Having graduated in law from the University of Birmingham, Ben joined the Chase Manhattan Corporate Finance graduate training scheme (where he met his wife).  He worked as a corporate bond investment banker for J.P. Morgan and subsequently Société Générale, advising financial institutions across Europe on their funding and capital requirements.  In 2009, he made the transition from advising institutional clients to retail clients, by establishing Kennedy Black Wealth Management.

With a postgraduate degree from the University of London, Ben is one of the most highly qualified advisers in the UK.  He is one of only a handful qualified to QCF level 7.

Ben contributes regularly to the financial press and has had articles published in the Financial Times and City A.M. among others. He has featured in The Independent, The Times, The Mail on Sunday, Money Observer and numerous industry publications, and been interviewed by Citywire, Morningstar and BBC Radio 5.

In his spare time, Ben enjoys keeping active, photography, wine and snowboarding. Sadly, his rugby-playing days are firmly behind him.  He lives in Beaconsfield with his wife and two young boys.
Ben's qualifications include:
  • Law degree, University of Birmingham (2:1)
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Finance with Mathematical Finance, Birkbeck College, University of London (Distinction)
  • Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning, Chartered Insurance Institute ('CII')
  • Chartered Financial Planner, CII
  • Certificate in Mortgage Advice, CII
  • Certificate in Investments (Securities and Financial Derivatives), Chartered Institute for Securities & Investments ('CISI')

Cathi Harrison
BA (Hons)
Cert CII (MP)

Ben is a Chartered Financial Planner

Cathi Harrison is the office Paraplanner, working tirelessly behind the scenes to help us deliver a first-class client service. Cathi writes our reports, collects quotes from providers, manages the application process and more.
Cathi has been a paraplanner for six years and, like Ben, has achieved Chartered status, the highest accolade for financial planners in the UK.
Cathi's qualifications include:
  • Business and English degree, University of Teeside
  • Chartered Financial Planner
  • Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning, CII   
  • Certificate in Mortgage Advice, CII

Vicky PriceVicky Price
Executive Assistant
Vicky Price is our Executive Assistant, helping ensure the office runs smoothly. She makes sure deadlines are met and helps manage Ben's diary as well as chase up clients, providers and everyone in-between. Vicky is currently working towards her CII Award in Financial Administration.



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