We therefore made a strategic decision to partner with a firm where their investment capability would enhance what we did as financial planners.
Following a lengthy period of due diligence, this led us into discussions with Seven Investment Management. and we have now been working with the 7IM team for over five years.
We are extremely costconscious, looking to drive out as much cost from our client portfolios as possible. If you accept that, over the long term, the equity risk premium is only 4 per cent or so over the risk-free rate, then we do not want clients to lose a significant amount of that premium in additional wrap or IT costs.
We therefore wanted a wrap that delivered asset custody, asset administration and online dealing as cheaply as possible.
We have a genuine partnership with 7IM and have had significant input into the design of their wrap proposition – this is extremely important to us.
One of the Paradigm Norton team spends time on a regular basis with the 7IM technology team based in Edinburgh, reviewing enhancements to the wrap account and incrementally adding to what they are currently able to deliver.
Why did we select 7IM as our preferred wrap provider? It has a very competitive charging structure, has independent asset custody and is committed to ongoing and incremental improvement to the platform and its functionality. There are
a breadth of funds available on the platform, many
of which are almost impossible to access on competitor wrap accounts.
Importantly, 7IM allocated a client relationship manager to Paradigm Norton to help us through difficulties which invariably arise from time to time. And finally, the ability to white-label the wrap account was hugely attractive, providing our clients with online access to their portfolios.
We have been delighted with the service levels that we have enjoyed over the years. Yes, things do go wrong from time to time but they are promptly resolved.
I appreciate the desire the 7IM team have for inno-vation and their ongoing preparedness to enhance what is already a very good IT solution. New tools are being introduced and are coming online on an ongoing basis but these are of limited value to us although they may be attractive to other adviser firms.
Barry Horner is chief executive at Paradigm Norton Financial Planning