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Informed Choice to launch execution-only platform in 2013

by Jun Merrett on Dec 04, 2012 at 13:08

Informed Choice to launch execution-only platform in 2013

Guildford-based Informed Choice is set to launch an execution-only platform in 2013.

The firm has tied up with an investment manager to white label its platform offering to target mass market clients with around £20,000 to £40,000 of assets.

The platform, called IC Direct, is currently in development stages and is due to be launched in March 2013 and will have one flat cost which aims to be the cheapest offering in the market.

Martin Bamford (pictured), managing director of Informed Choice, said the offering would provide the firm with an opportunity to cater for clients it had not been servicing in the past.

'We see it as targeting a different segment,’ he said. ‘Our clients typically have £300,000 in assets under management. This will enable us to service the mass market. We've got a lot of marketing plans to get those clients and it will be very social media-driven. 

‘We do think the fee structure is simple and clear and it will hopefully shake up the competition in the execution only space. There won't be any murky or hidden payments or loyalty payments, just one simple upfront charge for the platform and one for the fund manager and a guarantee it will always be the lowest available cost.'

6 comments so far. Why not have your say?

Rob Stevenson

Dec 04, 2012 at 13:28

I can't believe it - I'm first here. Ha ha. Well before the trolls venture out into the sunlight and crank out 99 abusive comments, let me just say well done guys.

A nice idea and I'm sure many other firms will attempt something similar at a later stage. These clients deserve to be looked after and I'm not convinced MAS is the answer.

Using SOMO is a great idea. Guess all that 'media savvyness' is useful after all #winner

Now where's that 'untick button'

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Barman

Dec 04, 2012 at 13:44

I though Martin was alluding to this on his twitter feed. Hope it all works out for them. Good luck!

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Jimmy via mobile

Dec 04, 2012 at 14:32

Wider choice for the public can only be good news.

How are you going to guarantee its the lowest cost? Could this guarantee mean doing it for nothing?

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Man in Black

Dec 04, 2012 at 14:50

@Martin Bamford

I tried this approach of serious segmentation almost 5 years ago. We were too early and simply didn't have a base to build from. And our timing was hardly great. Another point is that the online X-O market was too small and pretty saturated.

Whilst I stand by the lesson learned - that the bulk of the mass market will prefer face-to-face contact, and moreover advice for years to come - I really wish you good luck in this.

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Martin Bamford

Dec 05, 2012 at 10:53

@Rob Stevenson - Thanks, Rob. We've got some big plans about the use of social features, not limited to Social Media, to help investors make smart investment decisions. With the rise of Twitter and other social networks, it's inevitable that many investors will want opinions and guidance (but not advice!) from their peers when constructing portfolios and picking funds.

@Barman - Thank you!

@Jimmy - We will guarantee lowest available cost by having a very simple and transparent charging structure, with no 'kick back' style platform rebates for including funds on best buy lists, for example. Our customers will always benefit from the lowest available price available from the fund manager, with no hidden margins.

@Man in Black - Thank you. We agree that there will continue to be significant demand for traditional, face to face advisory services, particularly now the baby boomer generation is reaching retirement. What we also expect to see is a significant growth in investors wanting to make their own decisions, without advice, which is symptomatic of the way the majority of my own generation act and behave.

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Ian T Coley

Jan 30, 2013 at 11:45

We're launching a platform with a flat charge linked to the IC platform less 5% so I reckon we'll be stiff competitiion Martin.

:-)

Good luck

Ian Coley

Partner

Medical Investment Services

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