Standard Life has taken on Hargreaves Lansdown and unveiled its super clean share class deals.
Standard Life has negotiated preferential, rebate-free share classes for 290 funds with 13 fund groups including BlackRock, Invesco Perpetual, Investec, Neptune, Old Mutual Global Investors, Liontrust, Schroders, Standard Life Investments, Threadneedle, Aberdeen Asset Management, BNY Mellon, M&G and Vanguard.
The company has secured an average annual management charge (AMC) of 53 basis points (bps), marginally lower than the 54bps average AMC discount stockbroker Hargreaves secured in March for its Wealth 150+ list.
Fund groups Invesco Perpetual, Old Mutual Global Investors and Standard Life Investments have offered Standard Life superclean deals across their entire fund ranges. This includes star fund manager Richard Buxton's Old Mutual UK Alpha fund and old Invesco Perpetual Income, High Income and UK equity pension funds managed by Mark Barnett.
However, Henderson Global Investors pulled out of offering Standard Life any preferential share classes, despite committing to do so in September 2013.
The 290 funds are divided between 198 discounted mutual funds and 93 clean insured funds, which are managed by Standard Life but invest wholly in third party funds.
Standard Life will automatically convert clients into the superclean share classes by July.
David Tiller (pictured), Standard Life's head of adviser platforms, said the deals are a 'milestone' and the super clean share class funds represent over 50% of the funds on Standard Life's platform.
'Advisers have made it clear that to ensure they are well placed to look after the interests of all their clients, we should look to secure the best clean fund terms possible for existing clients as well as new,' he said.
'We are confident that we have more assets invested in discounted clean funds- as well as a wider range- than any other platform today and our aim is to build on this leading position.'
Graham Dow, Standard Life's head of investment group relationships, who was at the helm of the deals, added: 'For fund groups, they have a clear expectation that we should work to create operational efficiencies and not impose the further ancillary costs that many other platforms do.
'Working together, we have identified savings that we can all pass onto clients by way of reduced total fees.'
As part of the negotiations with the fund groups, Standard Life has waived any fees that it could recoup from fund groups including corporate actions or correcting pricing errors.
The deals have been long anticipated following Standard Life's announcement in September 2013 that it had secured preferential deals from 11 fund groups and said it was on track to secure deals from 15 fund groups by the end of February. The drop in number to 13 reflects Schroder's acquisition of Cazenove later in the year as both had initially been on Standard's list and Henderson's decision to drop out of the negotiations.
Earlier today Standard Life also confirmed it was set to buy Ignis Asset Management from Phoenix Group in a £390 million deal.