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&#39Usage is testament to AssureWeb&#39s challenging strategy&#39

Launched in 1998, the AssureWeb portal has come a long way in a short

space of time. Acquired by Misys in August 2001 and with the purchase

of a 40 per cent stake of the business last year by Friends

Provident, Norwich Union, Scottish Widows, Clerical Medical and

Aegon, it is fair to conclude that our solid business infrastructure

bodes well for our future development.

Back then, The Exchange dominated the marketplace and was the natural

choice for advisers doing electronic quotations. Yet there appeared

to be a huge gap waiting to be plugged by a company that was willing

to challenge the established player by competing with its core

offering but also attempting to move the IFA portal arena on to the

next level over and above a basic quotation system.

By developing our proposition with IFAs in mind and differentiating

ourselves on price, ignoring monthly fees and other charges, we knew

we had hit on something.

Furthermore, with our heritage in the IFA industry, we decided from

the outset that AssureWeb should be developed with advisers in mind,

with the technology working for them as opposed to the adviser

working for the technology.

In offering our unique refined quotations, we believe we are

providing an effective alternative to The Exchange, taking the

provider contact away from the busy adviser and freeing up more of

their time.

Then, to provide the service for free, we have achieved our original

objective of bringing something new, appealing and different to the

industry. With this in mind, we have been able to establish AssureWeb

in the market and provide advisers with a realistic and

cost-effective alternative to The Exchange.

However, the market now is moving on. We are aware that IFAs are

becoming more technically aware but, as this literacy increases, so

do their demands. Merely competing over quotations is to my mind a

risky strategy and for the market it is arguably yesterday&#39s news.

Advisers are demanding far more from their portal. They want a

portal that delivers true end-to-end processing, whereby the

technology supports them at every level from the start to the end of

any transaction. Providing a seamless link from quotations through to

new business submission and ultimately into policy servicing is where

we see the market moving and where the AssureWeb strategy is headed.

How did we arrive at this conclusion? Our membership told us. For

example, via the AssureWeb link to mi-solution we have the

opportunity to tie end-to-end efficiency with a good robust

compliance process, thus making a real difference to the adviser.

Electronic new business submission will make life easier for users by

saving them time, removing paper and allowing them to provide a

better service to their clients.

Applications submitted electronically will be partially filled in

from the quote and therefore require significantly less data input.

Also, they will be complete and error-free, removing the need for

follow-up calls with providers.

Our recent significant month-on-month growth in the number of IFAs

actively using the portal is testament to our challenging strategy.

We will we not leave it there.

We will continue to provide a service that challenges the status quo

but never forgets our core IFA heritage. We suggest you come with us.


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